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?
Julie Murphy’s SIDE EFFECTS MAY VARY is a fearless and moving tour de force about love, life, and facing your own mortality.
So what's on my bucket list? I have ex-boyfriends, but I think I get along pretty well with all of them so I don't anticipate getting any kind of revenge there. I don't really have an arch nemesis, although if I did it would probably be an elephant poacher or someone who litters a lot. But I do have a few things I'd like to accomplish that I can think of off the top of my head, so here goes.
1. Go To Ireland - This one might seem easy, but in true fashion I'm going to make it more difficult than the average hop across the pond. My goal is to trace my ancestors back to Ireland (I'm close) then trace that line forward to living relatives that I can go visit. Maybe they'll pick me up at the airport and let me sleep on their couch.
2. Ride A Mechanical Bull - Why? I don't know. I think it's because I saw Urban Cowboy too many times when I was growing up because I had a Charlie Daniels addiction. For whatever reason, riding a mechanical bull seems like the biggest way to express your lack of inner concern. Also a grew way to damage your spine permanently, which is why I should probably do it sooner rather than later.
3. Throw My Drink In Someone's Face - I've never really had this opportunity. I generally get along with people and have never had anyone insult me to my face to the point that I felt like dousing them with alcohol. Mostly when people do get really mad at me, I'm so amused at their reason that I mock them. Besides it's a waste of a drink.
4. Way Overdress For A Trifling Event or Way Underdress For A Really Important Event - This just seems like something I would do. I don't know that it would be a smart move, it just seems like a Mindy move. Like I'm going to wear my wedding dress (is there such thing as an ex-wedding dress?) to a book signing and wear jeans to the Oscars (because obviously I get invited every year and just haven't gone yet).
5. Make A Dress Out Of My Book Covers - It would be interesting. I could wear it to the Emmys (which of course, I'm also invited to every year and just haven't made room in my schedule for) and sit next to Lady Gaga.