Five Feet Apart
Rachael Lippincott (Author), Mikki Daughtry & Tobias Iaconis (Contributors)

(Book Based Off Screen Play)

Can you love someone you can never touch?

Stella Grant likes to be in control—even though her totally out of control lungs have sent her in and out of the hospital most of her life. At this point, what Stella needs to control most is keeping herself away from anyone or anything that might pass along an infection and jeopardize the possibility of a lung transplant. Six feet apart. No exceptions.

The only thing Will Newman wants to be in control of is getting out of this hospital. He couldn’t care less about his treatments, or a fancy new clinical drug trial. Soon, he’ll turn eighteen and then he’ll be able to unplug all these machines and actually go see the world, not just its hospitals.

Will’s exactly what Stella needs to stay away from. If he so much as breathes on Stella she could lose her spot on the transplant list. Either one of them could die. The only way to stay alive is to stay apart. But suddenly six feet doesn’t feel like safety. It feels like punishment.

What if they could steal back just a little bit of the space their broken lungs have stolen from them? Would five feet apart really be so dangerous if it stops their hearts from breaking too?

I can’t wait to see the movie. It’s rare I feel that way about a book, but this one was so real. I know it is made more real due to my connection to Cystic Fibrosis. But it’s worth it for anyone to read. The message throughout the book is loud a clear. LIVE, LOVE, BREATHE! 

From an accuracy stand point, it depicts CF very accurately. For any book/movie there has to be an amount of hand waving and alterations of recovery time & severity but I feel that this book handles those moments perfect. You can’t film a whole movie with the entire cast in masks. For anyone that is suggesting that, it’s petty & nitpicking. This movie is about awareness, it’s not a documentary, it’s as close as Hollywood can get to being factual while still creating an engaging story. For people with CF your health can really change in a few hours, without warning, and be life and death. Staying healthy really is a fine balance of living and sanitizing. For a current example of this, visit Lungs for Makayla, within 24 hours, she went from playing to needing a lung transplant.

There is no “One Process to Cure Them All”, when it comes to Cystic Fibrosis. Each doctor, clinic and hospital handles the disease completely different. Moms of CFers often compare notes, and become frustrated with the vastly different protocols and treatment plans between doctors. So while many moms of CFers will watch this movie in frustration at every maskless escapade, some young adults with CF will be thinking ‘totally done that’. This awareness was bought with the upmost respect to the CF community. They consulted many people including the beautiful Claire Wineland.

For those that question the instalove in this story, image living a life of isolation, being a teen where insta love already is flowing through your friends. You routinely push people away but you meet someone who shares your every worry, every fear, knows your struggles, knows what it’s like to live on borrowed time. Insta connections are a thing though out the CF community, while this one may have been rushed for the sake of movie time, they do happen. They may make choices their parents may cringe at, but above all they form a bond.

I hope this book urges everyone to not take their life for granted, and to stay home when sick! Also to take a moment and research cystic fibrosis.  If you want to learn more about having a discussion around Five Feet Apart check out this guide the CFF created.

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