This isn't just a teen romance with neurodifferent characters. In some ways, it's a scathing critique of American society, where the rich have expensive specialist schools, and the middle-class can't get their insurance to cover their therapy. It's an insight into how parents try to make their children fit a particular mould, and how medication (with side effects including suicidal thoughts) is relied upon heavily to try to achieve that. And sadly, it's also a very realistic picture of how we treat and accomodate different diagnoses. Lily is a beautiful character and I was able to empathise with her so readily. She can be selfish or unforgiving, but I also really felt her frustration of trying repeatedly to manage in a world that is extremely difficult for her. Her infatuation with Abelard feels like it happens very quickly, perhaps because I am used to measuring relationships by physical things - e.g. the first kiss, which takes these two quite a while - and theirs is maintained primarily through more distant things like text messaging. Also, time passes quite quickly so I can be reading a scene weeks later without necessarily noticing. Lily's family relationships are also an interesting subplot as she comes to terms with the ways her father has failed her, and her fears of disappointing the people she loves.
I'm not familiar with The Letters of Abelard and Heloise, a 19th century text which is repeatedly referenced, but you don't really need to be. I enjoyed this book anyway, and rate it very highly, especially as a debut.