Monday, March 17, 2014

Side Effects May Vary by Julie Murphy

Side Effects May Vary
By: Julie Murphy
Released: March 18, 2014
Source: Edelweiss
Purchase the Book: Amazon
*A copy of this book was provided by the publisher in exchange for an honest review

"What if you’d been living your life as if you were dying—only to find out that you had your whole future ahead of you?  When sixteen-year-old Alice is diagnosed with leukemia, her prognosis is grim. To maximize the time she does have, she vows to spend her final months righting wrongs—however she sees fit. She convinces her friend Harvey, whom she knows has always had feelings for her, to help her with a crazy bucket list that’s as much about revenge (humiliating her ex-boyfriend and getting back at her arch nemesis) as it is about hope (doing something unexpectedly kind for a stranger and reliving some childhood memories). But just when Alice’s scores are settled, she goes into remission. Now Alice is forced to face the consequences of all that she’s said and done, as well as her true feelings for Harvey. But has she done irreparable damage to the people around her, and to the one person who matters most?" (Summary from

I've been hearing so much about Side Effects May Vary for months so I was really looking forward to starting this one. After finishing it, I can definitely say that to me it lived up to all of the hype.

Alice was diagnosed with leukemia and accepted that she didn't have much time left. So she decides to make a bucket list and enlists her friend Harvey to help her. However after she finishes her list, she goes into remission and now has to face the consequences of what she has done. Alice and Harvey were both well developed and complex characters. 

I have to say Alice isn't a very likable character. She can be mean and manipulative. She has her good qualities, but she also has these bad qualities too. The same goes to Harvey, although he is more likable than Alice. The relationship between Harvey and Alice was complicated as well, but still believable.

From the first page this story hooked me in. The plot was developed very well and the writing was just beautiful. This book made me laugh and brought me to tears. Murphy handled the topic of cancer well. I loved how the story alternated between the Then and Now. It worked so well for this story and really helped develop the characters. 

Overall I loved Side Effects May Vary. It was an honest and beautifully written story.
My Rating:

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