Elevate Difference

Louder Than Words: Emily

There were two things that drew me to this book. Firstly, the title is Emily and, hey, that’s my name, too! Secondly, and more importantly, the story revolves around a young girl called Emily whose life is plagued by physical illnesses, which she endearingly calls “Emily flu.” Could this book possibly be written about me?

Alas, whilst I just suffer from chronic hypochondria, literary Emily has a genuine disease; the rare and incurable West Nile Virus. But even if your name isn’t Emily, and even if you’re fit and healthy, chances are you’ll be able to draw something positive from this tale.

Emily is a true story, an autobiography of one teenage girl and what it’s like when you’re forced to take a back seat in life. From school work to holidays, Emily is dealt a harsh hand. Drawing on her Mennonite faith, Emily uses her religion as a crutch to help her deal with the roller coaster of emotions that comes with her illness. Zapped of energy and plagued with dizzy spells, every day life is a nightmare for Emily, who yearns for the things we take for granted and often complain about, such as the ability to attend school and have achy legs from an arduous day at work. Written in diary form with short entries, Emily is the perfect book to dip into if you’re not an avid reader, although it can, at times, be void of much storyline and substance, so it may not be to everyone’s taste.

Emily’s enduring spirit and sense of determination displays a strong, focused view of the female gender. A quirky read—at times focusing on the monotonous activities of daily life, reflecting Emily’s isolation and confinement, which will make you think twice before moaning about your busy work schedule.

Written by: Emily Ray, December 29th 2009