Book Review – Me And Earl And The Dying Girl

by Jesse Andrews (Allen & Unwin) ISBN: 9781760290443

This novel is anything other than expected. When I first saw it, I thought it would be a sappy and heartfelt romance, where two lovers are torn apart by a fatal illness and are eventually so happy that they had each other in their lives, that it doesn’t even matter anymore. However, this story has a surprising and refreshing twist.

Greg is a normal teen who does what he can to get through high school smoothly. After his mother finds out that one of his childhood friends has leukaemia, Greg is forced to befriend her again. Through this mandatory friendship, Greg not only discovers the person that Rachel now is, but he also discovers things about himself that he never knew.

It is beautifully written and entertaining from start to finish. I loved the character of Earl and think that he is the perfect depiction to make the story even more hilarious and genuine.

Veerle Vijverberg


by Jesse Andrews (Allen & Unwin) ISBN: 9781760290443

Greg Gaines is your typical high school nerd — socially awkward, introspective, and creative. He spends his free time with his best friend Earl remaking classic films as charming little home movies. He is doing great at keeping ‘an insanely low profile’ — until his mother forces him to become friends with Rachel, a girl who’s been diagnosed with leukaemia.

Instead of following the typical boy-meets-dying-girl love story, Jesse Andrews focuses on a more powerful theme, and one which will probably resonate more deeply with a Young Adult audience: friendship. It’s this fresh approach that gives the book its charm, sensitivity, and emotion.

Just because it’s a book about a girl dying from terminal cancer, don’t be fooled in thinking it’s not funny. It’s hilarious, touching, honest, and quirky. Andrews uses great narrative devices to tell the story, including snippets of screenplays. If you loved the movie, you’ll love the book.  It’s Love Story for millennials — and worth the read.

Anthony Ehlers

Posted on: 30th January 2016