This book’s about Joe, a chatty enthusiastic eleven year old. He has SCID (Severe Combined Immunodeficiency) which means he can’t fight disease. He’s got a pretty boring life since he can’t leave his room and his visitors rarely come in, as they risk bringing a life threatening disease in. However, his new nurse, Amir, brings hope for him. He is completely crazy and is sure aliens will land outside the hospital. This book follows him through his adventures and how he copes with life.
Joe’s a really great character- he’s funny and is always optimistic, even when it’s so lonely and dull. He has a friend called Henry, 14, who has the same condition as him but he lives in America so they chat on Skype. His parents died in a car accident when he was very young but he has a kindhearted sister who comes to visit him as regularly as she can despite being in university.
This book was highly enjoyable and I certainly would recommend it to anyone. It made me think about how we spend too much time on computers, inside, which looks really bad when Joe has no choice but to stay inside. This is the first book I’m reading as a judge in the Hampshire Book Awards (this is one of the six finalist books) and I don’t think any others can top this. For the book award, we were asked to judge it on enjoyment, enrichment and engagement. I would give it:
Enjoyment: 8. Joe’s an exciting character and very funny .
Enrichment: 7. It makes you reflect on your own life and if you are wasting it when you could be something great.
Engagment: 9. I couldn’t stop reading it
By Will Marrit