Today marks the release of Marci Lyn Curtis’s The One Thing, which not only features a feisty heroine, a cute boy, and a bit of magic, but the best little kid ever. Here’s why you should read it:
Maggie Sanders is my kind of heroine. We’d never be friends because our personalities are basically the same and we’d get in some stupid fight because we’re both quick to anger, then we’d never speak again because we’re both terrible at apologies. It’d be sad.
Anyway, I loved being in her head because she basically reacted to things in the same way I would. Well, okay, I’d probably tell more people about the being able to see thing since, you know, she’s blind and then—BOOM—partial vision. But I loved that she went off on Mason when he was being a broody, mean jackwad. And I loved that she went off on her mom because the woman deserved it. She stood up for herself, which I respected.
She’s also a terrible friend, and even with Ben’s cloud of light, she’s blind to the fact that relationships make dealing with adversity stronger. I was dying for her to get over her frustration and embarrassment enough to embrace her friends, so I was super excited to see the relationship between her and Clarissa grow. In fact, Maggie’s resistance and then reluctant friendship with Clarissa was my one of my favorite parts of the story.
But let’s be serious: The shining spot in this book is Ben. The precocious 10-year-old is super smart, sort of a perv, and totally adorable. He’s no stranger to disability (he has spina bifida) and is exactly what Maggie needs in her life—a tiny dude in early-stage Augustus Watersdom.
As the blurb mentions, there’s romance between Maggie and Ben’s older brother, Mason, who happens to be the singer of an on-the-rise band. It’s dislike at first sight—and, yes, Maggie can see Mason, provided he’s in the bubble of light Ben emits. But while the romance is usually my favorite part of contemporary stories, I didn’t love it as much as I loved the Maggie-Ben friendship, which was basically the best thing ever.
I also loved the ending. Highlight the following spoiler-filled white type at your own peril:
I’ll be honest: I might have felt Maggie-level anger at Marci Lyn Curtis when I thought Ben was going to die. Well, anger mixed with don’t-do-this-to-me tears. It wasn’t pretty. I’m a sucker for a happy ending, and this one was perfect.
If you’re looking for a book with a great voice, a touch of magic, and disabled characters who are strong despite their disabilities, this is a great pick.
* I received this book from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. Which you just read.