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I Belong


Review: Don’t Touch by Rachel Wilson

Don't TouchTitle: Don’t Touch

Author: Rachel Wilson

Genre: YA Contemporary

Series: N/A

Publication Date: September 2, 2014

Format: Hardcover, 415 Pages

ISBN-10: 0062220934 (HarperTeen)

ISBN-13: 978-0062220936 (HarperTeen)

Reviewed by: Bridget

Synopsis:

A powerful story of a girl who is afraid to touch another person’s skin, until the boy auditioning for Hamlet opposite her Ophelia gives her a reason to overcome her fears.

Step on a crack, break your mother’s back. Touch another person’s skin, and Dad’s gone for good.

Caddie can’t stop thinking that if she keeps from touching another person’s skin, her parents might get back together… which is why she wears full-length gloves to school and covers every inch of her skin.

It seems harmless at first, but Caddie’s obsession soon threatens her ambitions as an actress. She desperately wants to play Ophelia in her school’s production of Hamlet. But that would mean touching Peter, who’s auditioning for the title role—and kissing him. Part of Caddie would love nothing more than to kiss Peter—but the other part isn’t sure she’s brave enough to let herself fall.

Perfect for fans of Laurie Halse Anderson, this debut novel from Rachel M. Wilson is a moving story of a talented girl who’s fighting an increasingly severe anxiety disorder, and the friends and family who stand by her.

Quick & Dirty: A beautiful story that was full of emotion, second chances, and growth. Unfortunately, this was just not a book for me, but I still think many others will really enjoy it.

Opening Sentence: “Candace Finn?”

Excerpt: Yes

The Review:

Caddie is just getting ready to start her senior year at a new school.  She was lucky to get into the academy where she will be able to pursue a possible career in acting.  There is just one big problem; Caddie suffers from a serve case of anxiety disorder.  Ever since her father left she hasn’t been able to touch another human being skin to skin.  Anytime anyone comes close to her she freaks out inside and does whatever she can to avoid any type of contact with others.  She knows that it is crazy, but she can’t seem to help it.

At first it doesn’t seem like it is going to be too much of a problem, but then she gets cast to play Ophelia in the school play. It has been her dream to play Ophelia, but one of the scenes will require her to kiss the boy playing Hamlet. Caddie already has a slight crush on Peter, the boy who got the coveted role of Hamlet, but she’s not sure she will be able to handle touching him even if she wants too.  Will she be able to overcome her fears or will she let her disorder rule her life?

I had a really hard time connecting with Caddie.  I think the reason why is because I have a hard time comprehending how she became so obsessed with people touching her.  I realize that her condition is not uncommon and that many people in the world suffer from something very similar to her, but personally I have never experienced anything like this so it is really hard for me to relate to Caddie.  I felt sympathetic towards her but most of the time I just found her frustrating.  I really wanted to connect with her but ultimately I just couldn’t.  In many ways she is a very strong girl and I respected that she eventually got help with her problems.  I know how hard it can be to ask for help and the fact that she did was very admirable.  I think she is a great character, and I think that many people will actually be able to relate to her much better than I did.

One of my favorite parts of the book was Peter. He was so adorable and I just couldn’t help but love him.  He is a total geek with amazing confidence, which is one of the main reasons he is so attractive. He doesn’t care what others think and he is totally comfortable in his own skin.  I loved how patient he was with Caddie. From the first moment they met, they had great chemistry, but for obvious reasons it took a long time for their relationship to develop.  But Peter never pushed her or made her feel any type of pressure to be different then who she was.  I thought that he was an amazing guy and Caddie is a very lucky girl to have him in her life.

Don’t Touch is a very emotional story full of heartache, growth, and forgiveness.  It was beautifully written and I felt that the message was delivered brilliantly. Unfortunately, it was a really slow paced book and I found myself skimming through a lot of it. First off, I had a hard time connecting with Caddie and overall I had a hard time connecting with the whole story.  I like to read to escape and for the most part this book was pretty depressing.  I can’t exactly pinpoint what was missing for me, but ultimately I think this was just not a book for me.  But having said that, I think that there will be tons of people that will really enjoy this book and if it sounds interesting to you, I recommend that you give it a try.

Notable Scene:

Peter catching me staring and stares back as if we k now each other well enough for that to be okay.

It’s unnerving.

“Caddie,” he says, like he’s testing it out. I can’t think how he knows my name, but I like the way it sounds in his voice. Does he have this effect on everyone?

He takes a step toward me—Don’t touch!

skull2

FTC Advisory:  HarperTeen provided me with a copy of Don’t Touch.  No goody bags, sponsorships, “material connections,” or bribes were exchanged for my review.

 

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