New YA Novel Shines a Light on Down Syndrome


Disclosure: I was sent a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. All opinions are my own.

Today I am going to share a new young adult book with you. This powerful book shines light on people with Down Syndrome. Before I share it I want to say there is a sticker in my copy warning about the content. It states: "Content Advisory Please be aware that this narrative contains depictions of alcohol and drug use, verbal and physical abuse, sex trafficking, and mentions of suicide." With that warning I have to say I had trouble putting this book down!! The book is Rosie Loves Jack by Mel Darbon. 

From the Publisher:
Fall in love with sixteen-year old Rosie, a girl with Down syndrome who’s fighting for little freedoms, tolerance, and love. A stunning, beautifully insightful debut YA novel from Mel Darbon.

“An enthralling story of resolve and grit… a moving and uplifting novel.” –The Guardian

“They can’t send you away. What will we do? We need us. I stop your angry, Jack. And you make me strong. You make me Rosie.”

Rosie loves Jack. Jack loves Rosie. So when they’re separated, Rosie will do anything to find the boy who makes the sun shine in her head. Even defy her parents’ orders and run away from home. Even struggle across London and travel to Brighton on her own, though the trains are cancelled and the snow is falling. Even though people might think a girl like Rosie, who has Down syndrome, could never survive on her own.

Introducing a strong and determined protagonist with Down syndrome, debut author Mel Darbon gives readers an underrepresented but much-needed point of view with a voice-driven, heartfelt story of finding your place an often big and intimidating world.

From Me:

Wow! That is my first word to describe this book. This powerful book had me in tears many times. I had so much trouble putting it down. In fact when my power went out last night and I had to stop reading it I was upset. It was late and I should have been sleeping but I was reading because I had to know what happened to Rosie. I tossed and turned all night long not knowing (and hearing the wild wind outside). All I wanted to do when I woke up was finish. 

This book shares a strong view of a young woman with Down syndrome. It shares the good and bad in people and our society. It takes place in England. She goes off by herself in search of her boyfriend and along the way things happen like the snow causing all the trains to shut down and her phone dying. Throughout the book the reader sees the attention, both good and bad, that she gets because of her Down syndrome. The book is written in almost a diary manner. Each chapter starts with the date though some chapters share the same date. The story shares her point of view and thoughts. It is eye-opening into the mind of a person with Down syndrome. I love how she fights to be treated like everyone else and how she and Jack fight to be together. This book is so unique and it is well written. I hope you will check it out.