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Tag Archives: books about cancer

Estelle: Side Effects May Vary by Julie Murphy

Side Effects May Vary by Julie Murphy ( web | tweet ) Publication Date: 3/18/2014 Publisher: HarperCollins/Balzer+Bray Pages: 336 Target audience: Young adult Keywords: cancer, friendship, romance, parental relationships, revenge Format read: ARC from Publisher via Edelweiss. (Thanks!) Summary: Alice and Harvey are two estranged friends who team up to complete her must-do list when […]

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March 30, 2014 - 10:20 am

brittany @ The Book Addict's Guide - Oh wow, very much of a winner! Being that person who puts off “cancer books” (it’s just not a topic that appeals to me a lot), I don’t even have this one on my TBR. I think you may have just convinced me!

March 19, 2014 - 10:56 am

Ginger @ GReads! - Oh this book. And this writer! How I adore both. I love that Alice is a character that is so easily hated, yet by the end of the story there’s a sense of understanding as to why she is this way. That right there is a testament to Julie’s writing. So glad you enjoyed this book.

March 19, 2014 - 12:05 am

Liz - I find it interesting that you identify as Harvey. I am probably some disgusting combination of Alice and Harvey–I do wear my heart on my sleeve, and am loyal when I want to be, but I know how awful I can be when I want to be. I want a boy like Harvey and I connected to Alice’s desire to stop being awful. Great review, Estelle.

March 17, 2014 - 11:34 pm

Alexa S. - I liked Julie Murphy’s writing a lot! I was swept up in Side Effects May Vary, curious to see how it would all end. Alice wasn’t particularly likable, but I could understand where she was coming from in a way. And Harvey deserved a shake or two, but I liked him a lot!

March 17, 2014 - 6:22 pm

Alice - I’m very much looking forward to reading this one sometime soon. It sounds like a really interesting story. It sounds like Alice is either a character that is hard to relate to because of her imperfections but I’m glad that that didn’t affect how you felt overall about this story. Not all characters are perfect!

Great review Estelle! 😀

March 17, 2014 - 4:22 pm

Lauren @ love is not a triangle - I’ve gotten very wary of ‘bucket list’ plot lines. But this one sounds like it was done differently. I’ve read a lot of mixed reactions to Alice’s behavior, but I’m glad that you were able to understand where she was coming from. The fact that you want to read this again is definitely a big plus! Great review.

March 17, 2014 - 2:28 pm

Quinn @ Quinn's Book Nook - Side Effects May Vary is definitely a book I want to read, so I’m glad to hear you liked it. It must be quite a shock for Alice after she’s done whatever it is she does, to learn she will have to live with it a lot longer than she was expecting.

March 17, 2014 - 2:21 pm

Maggie @ Just a Couple More Pages - I am such an Alice (not something I’m necessarily proud of, but at least I’m self-aware enough to realize it?) and maybe that explains why we’re friends? I am so mad I only found out about the God-Shaped Hole Thing after I read the book (I think I saw you or G mention it on Twitter) which I guess just means I have to go back and re-read it. There was something I thought of to say while I was reading your review but now I can’t remember. Sometimes I think I subconsciously challenge myself to leave the most random comments on your posts.

March 17, 2014 - 12:19 pm

Addison (Of Spectacles and Books) - I loved this book as well! I enjoyed the imperfectness of Alice. It made me relate to her more on a human level.

Estelle: The Look by Sophia Bennett

The Look by Sophia Bennett ( tweet | web ) Publication Date: March 1, 2013 Publisher: Chicken House (Scholastic) Pages: 336 Target audience: young adult Keywords: modeling, cancer, London, siblings, family, self-discovery Format read: ARC from Publisher via NetGalley. (Thanks!) Summary: The world becomes a confusing place for Ted when she finds out her fab-looking […]

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March 4, 2013 - 5:12 pm

Magan + Estelle's Shelve It >> 3/3/2013, Estelle + Magan - […] The Look by Sophia Bennett review Magan in High School { a personal piece } Three Sisters by Susan Mallery review Going Vintage by Lindsey Leavitt review Themed Gift Pack: Also Known As by Robin Benway Things I Can’t Forget by Miranda Kenneally review […]

March 4, 2013 - 4:40 pm

Alexa Y. - I had no idea that this was set in London! That immediately makes me want to add it to my TBR list (which is happening… RIGHT… NOW!)

I really adore the fact that this book really involves Ted’s family, and not just Ted herself. The relationship between sisters is always fun to read about, and I think I’d enjoy reading about Ted and Ava 🙂

March 3, 2013 - 9:01 am

The Look's Sophia Bennett Talks Literary Sisters + Giveaway - […] from Estelle: Hopefully you checked out yesterday’s review of The Look by Sophia Bennett, which was released in the United States on March 1, 2013. I can confidently say it was one of my […]

March 2, 2013 - 4:09 pm

elena - I <3 models and think their appeal is that they're odd looking (Gemma Ward in her heyday looked like an alien) because it's more striking in editorials or runways. so Ted sounds like a good choice if she's tall and looks interesting! go Ted. it sounds like a v touching journey & you can definitely feel for Ted. also yay for London.

Estelle: Send Me a Sign by Tiffany Schmidt

Send Me a Sign by Tiffany Schmidt ( website | tweet ) Publication Date: October 2, 2012 Publisher: Walker Children’s Pages: 384 Target audience: Young adult Keywords: cancer, popularity, secrets, superstitions Format read: ARC from NetGalley (Thanks!) Summary: For a person who is always prepared and fighting to excel in just about everything, Mia is […]

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October 18, 2012 - 8:00 pm

elena - looking for little signs from the universe is my LIFE but i don’t know how accurate it actually is. i’m sorry this didn’t quite make the emotional impact you wanted but great review! <3

October 15, 2012 - 2:12 pm

Alexa @ Alexa Loves Books - The fact that Mia looks for signs everywhere was the thing that drew me towards this book – I love doing that on occasion, or trying to reinterpret things in my life as “signs”. And it did sound like such a great story! I’ll probably still read it, but at least I’m going in forewarned about the lack of breakthrough in Mia’s journey.

October 14, 2012 - 6:46 pm

Tara - Sigh… you know how I feel about this one (as it’s the same way you feel). I had high, high hopes for this book and sadly, it just fell short. I think a few tweaks in the major story lines could have made the book great, but they just didn’t happen.

October 14, 2012 - 5:22 am

VeganYANerds - This one sounds interesting, I definitely want to read it but I know I will probably have mixed feelings, too!

October 13, 2012 - 5:44 pm

Kristen Evey - Hmm… this may or may not be one that I’ll read. I’m drawn to the cover (I have this thing for dandelions), but judging from what you’ve said about it I’m just not sure if it’s the book for me. I totally agree with you. I don’t care if the characters are similar to me, but I want to see them learn and change and grow throughout the story. The fact that she is looking for little signs from the universe intrigues me though. Maybe I’ll pick it up if I see it at the library. Great review Estelle!

October 13, 2012 - 6:04 am

Lori - Yes, yes, yes to everything you said! I’m so happy to see that I’m not the only one that felt this way. I just didn’t like Mia much and I loathed her friends. I really wanted to see her come to some great realization about her life, but alas.

October 12, 2012 - 9:43 pm

Estelle - I’m glad that you had some of the same feelings as I did. I felt like I was beating myself up over how and why this didn’t work for me. There were some little details I really liked (like the beach at the winter scene and the almost end) but… you make some really great points about how we lean on men for their “protection”. It’s a genius idea that I didn’t even start to think about. Maybe Mia almost felt more trust for men because the relationship with her mom was so shakey? It’s possible. Hmm…

October 12, 2012 - 9:40 pm

Estelle - I’ll be curious to hear your thoughts. It’s a shame because I think some tweaks structurally could have made this book very moving… and it just wasn’t there.

October 12, 2012 - 9:21 pm

April Books & Wine - I liked The Probability Of Miracles, so I think I’d dig Send Me A Sign.

I’m sorry Mia didn’t do it for you and that the breakthroughs kind of weren’t there. Alas.

October 12, 2012 - 11:05 am

Jamie - I just finished this one and felt pretty similarly! Like I really enjoyed it but I was so frustrated with some of her decisions and I SO wanted her to also have a girl friend to lean on during this time. Putting everything in the hands of one person (especially when it’s a guy) is not a good idea. I mean I could kind of identify…when my mom was sick it was so much easier for me to let a guy be the one I went to. You kind of feel safe with them..like they can protect you..even though clearly they could have done nothing about the cancer growing in my mom’s brain. SO on one hand, I could identify but I really was hoping she would open up to somebody! AND I agree with you..I loved that little parts with some of the nurses. I just felt so SAD for her that she wouldn’t tell people and had to really go it alone.

Great review! I’m glad I wasn’t the only one who had thought I’d be emotionally somewhere else with this novel but didn’t end up there.

Estelle: Daughters for a Time by Jennifer Handford

Daughters for a Time by Jennifer Handford Publication Date: April 24, 2012 Publisher: Amazon Pages: 302 Target audience: Adult fiction Keywords: infertility, adoption, cancer, loss of parent, estranged parent, marriage Format read: ARC from Little Bird Publicity (Thanks!) Summary: This book details the emotional journey of Helen, a woman who after years of trying to […]

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September 20, 2012 - 2:40 pm

Factoring in the Price Tag: New Rating System (Rather Be Reading Blog) - […] Hearts Club by Elizabeth Eulberg ( Amazon | B&N ) Saving Ruth by Zoe Fishman ( Amazon ) Daughters for a Time by Jennifer Handford ( Amazon ) For Amazon Prime members, you can downlaud this for free! New […]

June 29, 2012 - 1:09 am

VeganYANerds - This really does sound heartbreaking, but I am a sucker for books like this and I really enjoyed your review, Estelle!

June 28, 2012 - 12:13 pm

Alexa @ Alexa Loves Books - Oh E, this one sounds really, really, really good. I always have a space in my heart for novels that focus on difficult situations, that will really touch a reader’s heart. And I will definitely be checking this one out.

As always, I love when you write reviews for adult novels. I don’t have enough of those in my life!

June 27, 2012 - 10:49 am

Jessie Marie - I recently read a book very similar to this. The stories aren’t relatable but the major themes (nontraditional families, searching for one’s biological parents, etc.) and feelings they invoked are very familiar to me. I didn’t think another book like that existed but I’m glad to hear about Daughters for a Time, a book I’d not heard about till now.

I really loved this review. Definitely got across to me that I need to read it. I don’t think fiction gets any better than real, strong emotions that take over one’s heart and it sounds like Daughters for a Time does that exactly.

Yeah, we all go for the high intensity, fast paced YA dystopians. But sometimes an adult book with real life stories between the covers is just every bit as amazing, if not more so. Thanks for bringing this to attention. : )