What to Read After… Look Up! 20/09/21
The Bubble Boy
Publisher: Simon and Schuster
Joe has always lived in a sterile room in a hospital. He's the 'bubble boy': documented on TV because of a rare condition, affecting his immune system, that keeps him vacuum-packed from the rest of society. Like any other kid, Joe loves films, superheroes, football and chatting to his friends - but his whole life is lived through a screen.
Stewart Foster's debut is light-hearted and unusual enough to stop younger readers dwelling on Joe's traumatic situation too much. Joe himself is mostly upbeat and able to enjoy the things and people he loves.
The arrival of a new nurse certainly livens up life on the ward - and Amir is a colourful creation. Her eccentricities lead the story into some rather far-fetched territory but that's probably a good thing, since real life for Joe is not much fun.
The Bubble Boy will speak to many readers, as they might find it is their similarity to Joe that surprises them, despite their apparently dramatic differences.