No and Me is a simple story about a 13-year-old girl who has an intelligence that isolates her from her peers. Difficulties at home make her life even harder, but everything changes when she befriends No, a homeless girl a few years older than her.
The book is very quick to read and contains a nice, heartwarming story, but I found it too straightforward to satisfy me. It felt like a children's book and the teenage protagonist emphasised this classification.
Several serious issues were raised, but although it contained some emotional scenes I thought the book lacked subtlety. Everything was explained in easy to understand terms - perfect you teenagers, but a little patronising for intelligent adults.
"Before I met No I thought that violence meant shouting and hitting and war and blood. Now I know that there can also be violence in silence and that it's sometimes invisible to the naked eye. There's violence in the time that conceals wounds, the relentless succession of days, the impossibility of turning back the clock. Violence is what escapes us. It's silent and hidden. Violence is what remains inexplicable, what stays forever opaque."
I also thought that some of the story line was a bit far fetched, or at the very least over simplified. I don't want to give anything away (although you can probably guess what happens!) but I have serious doubts about whether the events in this book could happen in real life, especially in the given time frame.
If you are interested in books about teenagers coming to terms with difficult situations then I recommend that you read Luke and Jon
instead. The writing quality is far higher and I guarantee that you'll find it more emotional.
Recommended to those who like simple, sentimental books.