Book Review: The Unlikely Hero of Room 13B by Teresa Toten

The Unlikely Hero of Room 13B
Author: Teresa Toten
Reading Level: Young Adult
Genre: Contemporary
Released: March 10, 2015
Review Source: Delacorte Books for Young Readers

Deep, understated, and wise, this engaging YA novel, winner of the Governor General’s Award in Canada, is about more than the tough issue of teens dealing with obsessive-compulsive order. It also has romance, and a whodunit element that will keep readers guessing. Perfect for readers who love Eleanor & Park!

Adam Spencer Ross is almost fifteen, and he’s got his hands full confronting the problems that come with having divorced parents and new stepsiblings. Add to that his obsessive-compulsive disorder and it’s just about impossible for him to imagine ever falling in love. Adam’s life changes, however, the instant he meets Robyn Plummer: he is hopelessly, desperately drawn to her. But is it possible to have a normal relationship when your life is anything but?

Filled with moments of deep emotion and unexpected humor, The Unlikely Hero of Room 13B explores the complexities of living with OCD and offers the prospect of hope, happiness, and healing.

I just love it when books like this fall in my lap! The storyline was spot on...the characters were outstanding...and the writing was superb. Teresa Toten has hit it out of the park with this one and I'm so glad that I get to share it with you!! I was blown away from page one and I couldn't put it down. The main reason I keep reading a book is because of the writing. If it isn't there, I'm done before I even started. This book was amazing and caught my attention from the very first page.

When I first started reading this book I felt like I was reading The Fault in our Stars, which is a good thing, because it's about a group of kids who have severe cases of OCD who meet in a support group to talk about it. I mean, like severe cases. Like I can't go on with my day until I've brushed my hair exactly thirty-five times or turned on and off the lights in the bathroom exactly twenty times. Adam is the main character in the book and it opens in his support group where he meets Robyn, the love of his life, or so what he wants. This love feeling is new to him and he's not quite sure how to handle it. He has major OCD and anxiety and I love how you see everything through his eyes even though it's written in third person.

The characters were so spot on. Adam and Robyn were my favorite of course, but I loved all of the quirky kids in the support group. The superhero theme runs through the book because they all choose superhero names to call each other. It's kind of cute because they choose heros that relate to them. I also like how they start to come out of their shells and start to help each other out instead of just sitting there. I remember counting my steps when I was younger or not stepping on cracks, but that's nothing compared to what these kids have to face on a daily basis. The research that Toten had to do and keep it going through the book probably took forever, but it paid off for her in the end.

I also loved the book because it had a family. Yes, there are books out there that have family in them, but lately it's like the parents are distant or not even there. I loved the relationship he had with his little brother "Sweetie." It made me giggle sometimes and I caught myself smiling during the scenes that they were in together. I can totally relate to his mother as well. She has major anxiety like Adam and is a hoarder. My mother-in-law is a hoarder and I didn't quite understand her until I read this book. A lot of the things that I saw in the mom, I see in her. I was emotional during the family parts to say the least.

Overall, I LOVED this book and can't wait for you guys to read it too. I know that I will be reading everything else that this writer has written. She is a fabulous writer and I can't get enough of her! I look forward to hearing what you guys think about it!!

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