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Side Effects May Vary

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What if you’d been living your life as if you were dying—only to find out 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, who she knows has always had feelings for her, to help her with a crazy bucket list that’s as much about revenge ...

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Side Effects May Vary

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What if you’d been living your life as if you were dying—only to find out 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, who 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 archnemesis) as it is about hope (doing something unexpectedly kind for a stranger). 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 caused 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.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
An embittered 17-year-old cancer patient and her lovelorn childhood best friend alternate narration in Murphy's grim debut. Harvey and Alice grew up together and were close until high school, when Alice quit dancing at Harvey's mother's ballet studio and started dating a popular athlete. After Alice is diagnosed with leukemia and begins treatment, she turns to Harvey for support and assistance with her short and surprisingly negative bucket list. When the cancer inexplicably goes into remission, Alice has to start thinking of her life in the long-term again. Though the story jumps around between Alice's initial diagnosis/treatment and her remission one year later, the characters and their problems are virtually indistinguishable in both time periods, making it tricky to keep the storylines straight. Alice's anger is believable and a welcome change from portraits of cancer victims as saints, though her treatment of other people, including Harvey, can still be distancing. Harvey is a sympathetic narrator, though, and it's a relief when he and Alice get a hopeful ending after a slow, dark story. Ages 14–up. Agent: Molly Jaffa, Folio Literary Management. (Mar.)
Jennifer Echols
“A funny and touching novel about a strong-willed heroine who finds facing death simple, but facing life heart-wrenchingly complicated. A real original.”
John Corey Whaley
“Julie Murphy weaves together a tender and funny tale of love, friendship, heartache, and redemption. SIDE EFFECTS MAY VARY explodes with brutal honesty, brilliant wit, and unflinching heart.”
Siobhan Vivian
“Julie Murphy’s SIDE EFFECTS MAY VARY is a funny, heartfelt, honest look at the beauty and the risk of getting a second chance. An inspiring novel about all the things worth living for. I adored this debut!”
“Alice and Harvey’s relationship is raw, honest, moving, and unapologetic in its depiction of their individual, and collective, pain.”
Teen Vogue
“A tale of unlikely romance, impossible obstacles, and mortality, this book is a must-read.”
Seventeen Magazine
“It’s equal parts fun, cringe-worthy, and totally fearless!”
Voya Reviews, April 2014 (Vol. 36, No. 1) - Heidi Culbertson
This is a story about living life to the fullest, and the author effectively captures what it would be like for someone to believe they were living out their last days. Unfortunately, the frequent sensual moments in the book and the profanity of some of the characters detract from the flow and enjoyment of the story. Aside from that, this is a story that celebrates what it means to live. Reviewer: Heidi Culbertson, Teen Reviewer; Ages 15 to 18.
Voya Reviews, April 2014 (Vol. 36, No. 1) - Jane Harper
What would you do if you knew you had only a few months to live? For Alice, diagnosed with leukemia, it means a furious race against time to cross every item off of her Just Dying To Do List. She enlists the help of Harvey, her best friend from childhood. Together they do some simple and sweet things, like learning to drive and re-creating a beloved childhood vacation. For the most part, however, Alice wreaks havoc, plotting an outrageously cruel revenge against a frenemy and publicly humiliating a former boyfriend. She knows she will not be around to face the consequences of her actions. Then, in something of a medical miracle, Alice goes into remission and finds herself with another chance at life. This is an unexpected twist on the typical cancer story, and Alice is a wonderfully flawed protagonist who still manages to be a sympathetic character. Hurt, frightened, and angry, she alienates those closest to her and struggles with a storm of strong emotions and impulses, both healthy and unhealthy. Brief chapters alternate points of view between Alice and Harvey, so readers are able to see her story from more than one perspective. In addition, the chapters alternate time periods from before and after Alice’s remission, allowing readers to experience her struggles when she is sick and when she is well. The slowly developing romance between Harvey and Alice adds depth and appeal to this engaging story of second chances. Reviewer: Jane Harper; Ages 15 to 18.
School Library Journal
Gr 9 Up—Sixteen-year-old Alice is in the final stages of leukemia. While her body is being decimated by chemo, she reconnects with her longtime childhood friend, Harvey, and enlists him to help her complete a Dying-To-Do List. Revenge on her ex-boyfriend who cheated on her? Check. Revenge on the girl he cheated with? Check. Visiting the memory-laden but run-down amusement park of her childhood? Check. Ready to die, Alice is completely shocked when her cancer suddenly goes into remission. Faced with life, she now has to deal with the kind of person she has become (not the nicest) and the kind of person she wants to be. On top of everything, how will she handle the complicated love she feels for Harvey? Caring for him feels impossible because she doesn't trust the reprieve from cancer that she's been given. Growing up is hard, but growing up with the threat of a recurrence of cancer is even harder. The narrative demands that close attention be paid, as chapters alternate between the points of view of both Alice and Harvey, as well as between Then (when Alice had cancer) and Now (when she is cancer-free). Honest and unflinching, this is a compelling story of one teen's struggle with cancer, love, and living. A worthwhile addition.—Ragan O'Malley, Saint Ann's School, Brooklyn, NY
Kirkus Reviews
A teen faces mortality—and then the possibility of life after all. Alice has spent the last year convinced she will die of acute lymphocytic leukemia, but now she's in an unexpected remission, and the fatalism that earlier freed her from any scruples she felt about completing the more extreme items on her Just Dying To-Do List won't serve her well if she's going to live. In chapters that alternate perspective between Alice and her steadfast, loving not-quite-boyfriend, Harvey, Alice exacts revenge on her ex-boyfriend, Luke, and her chief nemesis, Celeste. Her dramatic flair and creativity in these endeavors—including a re-enactment of the pig's blood scene from Carrie—are as chilling as they are entertaining. Alice's ballsy triumphs over the people who've caused her grief box her into an untenable cycle of revenge and payback. Were it not for Alice's bracing honesty (if only with herself) about her crises of confidence and her devotion to Harvey, she might come across as only a rather unpleasant and manipulative girl obsessed with having the last word before she dies. Instead, readers will, like Harvey, see Alice in all her complexity. Unlike most teens-with-cancer novels, Alice's story ends on a note of hard-won redemption and possibility. Readers will turn the last page wanting to know where the next chapter leads. (Fiction. 15-18)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781482992533
  • Publisher: Blackstone Audio, Inc.
  • Publication date: 3/18/2014
  • Format: CD
  • Edition description: Unabridged
  • Age range: 12 - 17 Years
  • Product dimensions: 5.20 (w) x 5.80 (h) x 1.10 (d)

Meet the Author

Julie Murphy
lives in North Texas with her husband who loves her, her dog who adores her,
and her cats who tolerate her. When she’s not writing or trying to catch stray animals, Julie can be found in a library smelling old books and manning the reference desk.

Kirby Heyborne is a musician, actor, and professional narrator. Noted for his work in teen and juvenile audio, Kirby has garnered numerous Earphones Awards. His audiobook credits include Jesse Kellerman’s The Genius, Cory Doctorow’s Little Brother, and George R. R. Martin’s Selections from Dreamsongs.

Cassandra Campbell, Audie-nominated narrator and winner of several Earphones Awards, has performed in regional theaters across the country and in several off-Broadway shows at the Public Theater and the Mint Theater. In addition to narrating audiobooks, acting, and directing, she is a commercial and documentary voice-over artist.

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4
( 13 )
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Sort by: Showing all of 13 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 11, 2014

    i loved how it didnt stray from being itself

    i loved how it didnt stray from being itself

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 3, 2014


    Loved it. It was like TFIOS with revenge and remission

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  • Posted July 29, 2014

    Side Effects May Vary by Julie Murphy was a great, eye-opening b

    Side Effects May Vary by Julie Murphy was a great, eye-opening book about treasuring every moment and living life to the fullest. I liked the take Murphy took on the topic of "cancer" and the dual POVs actually turned out great. Side Effects May Vary was an amazing debut and I fully recommend it to anyone in need of a good YA contemporary..and this one is definitely memorable!

    In the book, we meet 16 year old Alice who has leukemia. In her last months, she tries to fix all the wrongs she did and make her last few month memorable. As Alice pieces back her life together from her besfriend, Harvey to family dynamics, she learns how important life is. I admired Alice a lot in the book. We see her in different lights since Murphy decided to do "Then" and "Now" chapters in the book. I liked the mission Alice set out to do and seeing how everything pieced together. Great characters and each one was memorable!

    I'm glad that Side Effects May Vary didn't have that romance overdose. While we see Harvey deal with his feelings for Alice and Alice seeing her family fall apart, romance wasn't the main point, and I LIKED that a lot! It seems like a trend with YA authors, romance has to be the big aspect of the novel, but Murphy reinvented that and I really enjoyed it. Everything about Side Effects May Vary was stunning from it's cover to the little quotes even to it's bittersweet ending.

    Everyone needs to pick this one up! Trust me, you'll definitely enjoy Alice's story of recovery!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 25, 2014

    This is an okay book. I first wanted to read it because I though

    This is an okay book. I first wanted to read it because I thought I would relate to the main character with cancer, being a young adult cancer survivor myself. Even though the story touch on that part of her journey of before, going through and after being diagnosed and in remission, I feel like the story is more focus on her relationship with the boy next door, aka her male best friend, who is like forever being friendzoned lol Making you want to like Harvey and less of Alice. I do like how the story is played through flashbacks "Then" and "Now" chapters to give you that background and how their past events shaped how they are today.Though that can get a big confusing making you feel like when are they ever going to get together? because it constantly seem like she wants him but then dont , then do again. It was a decent book, pretty brief when I think more about it after I finished it. 

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 17, 2014

    Could Be Better

    I was really excited to start this book because the summary made it sound very interesting and feel-good. However the summary did not include how much you will hate the main character. I get that it was not the authors intention for the reader to relate to and like Alice but she did not have to make her a cold-hearted reptile who disregarded anyones feelings that weren't her own. For me, it's hard to like a book if I don't like the main character so I tried to separate my feelings of dislike for Alice and that of the actual novel in order to write a fair review. The plot and other character development was superb. So if you can ignore an obnoxious main character, go ahead and read this book, you'll probably love it.

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  • Posted May 15, 2014

    more from this reviewer

    Alice has already accepted her fate. A sixteen year old diagnose

    Alice has already accepted her fate. A sixteen year old diagnosed with leukemia, this isn't some miracle waiting to happen. The very thing that's supposed to be curing her is killing her. When her parents decide it's time to stop the chemo, Alice knows they just pulled the plug. She's going to die. With the help of her best friend, Harvey, who's had a crush on her since they were little, she gets revenge on her homophobic ex boyfriend who messed with one of her classmates and an arch nemesis of hers since she was a kid, relives some childhood memories, and tries some things she's never done before. Just as Alice decides she's done making marks, she goes into remission. Bam. Now, Alice has to go back and face all the horrible things she's done, all while trying to deal with her conflicted feelings about Harvey.Alice is a brat. She's mean, and vengeful, and deeply flawed, and selfish and uses Harvey. Actually, she treats him like a dog. And I think that's why I liked her so much. Don't get me wrong, she's horrible, but she seems so realistic, you can't help but sympathize with her. I've actually never read a book told by a mean girl, and I only hope they all have the same second thoughts as Alice, even if they brush them aside. Harvey is SO much more likeable, but honestly, I didn't like him that much. Even though Alice treats him like a dog, Harvey lets her, even when he doesn't want to. She always manages to pull him back. His lack of...self control(?) really bothered me. I do kinda get where he's coming from though. Alice treats him like a yo-yo, bringing him in and letting him feel like there is something between them, and then pushing him away, leaving him stranded. I felt bad for him, but it was more like an "Oh, poor you, boo hoo, now deal with it." than actually sympathizing with him.I really did like how not only did the story alternate between Alice and Harvey, but also between the past and present. Some people might not like that though, so watch out. There is a lot of cussing in this book, so not for younger kids. Overall, Side Effects May Vary is a great, not cliché cancer story that won't make you sob your eyes out.

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  • Posted May 3, 2014

    (Source: I received a digital copy of this book for free on a re

    (Source: I received a digital copy of this book for free on a read-to-review basis. Thanks to HarperCollins and Edelweiss.)
    Alice has been living life without worrying about consequences, because she knows that her leukaemia will soon kill her. Then she goes into remission.
    What will Alice do now? And how many people has she used and alienated while she thought it didn’t matter?

    This started off good, but I lost interest half way through, and the ending was a bit of a let-down.

    Alice was an okay character, and I liked how she wanted to live her life without restraints because she had an expiry date. I didn’t like the way that she treated Harvey though, all she did was mess with his feelings, without admitting any of her own, which I thought was really bad. She never seemed to consider how he would feel when she died, or how he’d feel when she went into remission, she just thought about how she felt.

    The storyline in this was okay, but I lost interest half-way through. I thought that some of Alice’s little revenge tactics were interesting, but I hated all the dilly-dallying around, and wanted the story to move on a bit quicker.
    The romance in this was a bit odd. It seemed obvious that Harvey loved Alice, and Alice seemed to love Harvey in return, but then didn’t want to admit it for all sorts of reasons. The way she used him time and time again, never told him her real feelings, and then ignored him was just awful, and I really didn’t like that about her. I wanted her to just man up, and admit her feelings, especially considering the number of times he told her he loved her, but she just carried on being horrible to him.
    The ending of this was disappointing for me. It just didn’t feel like an end, and even though Alice did eventually do something nice for someone, based on her previous actions, I could just see her turning around and being nasty again in the next breath, and things just weren’t solid enough for me to finish this thinking that anything had changed.
    Overall; okay story, but the ending was disappointing.
    6.75 out of 10.

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted April 18, 2014

    Side Effects May Vary is a young adult novel splitting its focus

    Side Effects May Vary is a young adult novel splitting its focus between the moody Alice and the lovesick Harvey. Both offer unique perspective on the same storyline, but it’s clear that Alice’s life and the events surrounding it are the driving force behind the plot. Labeled The Fault in Our Stars meets Sarah Dessen, it is thankfully not a cancer book. Alice is indeed a teenage girl diagnosed with leukemia, but this does not swallow the story whole, nor does it cause the characters to descend into the overly sappy territory typically reserved for the subject matter. First and foremost it is about the relationship between Alice and Harvey, and Alice’s unwillingness to commit to him. It’s about family dynamics and how a child reacts when witnessing a parent’s adultery. Finally, it’s about examining how we deal with life’s problems and whether or not we allow a bad situation to ruin who we are.

    Alice as a character was certainly a bold choice. She is wholly unlikeable and this is not an exaggeration. It is quite a feat for the protagonist to have cancer and still be loathed. This is an extremely self-aware novel though. The author knows just how horrid Alice is and doesn’t shy away from addressing her attitude at the climax. Still, her prickly demeanor may deter people from reading beyond the first fifty pages. In order to combat this, the story shifts between the present and the past, the past representing Alice’s cancer treatment and the present detailing her return to the world of the living. Still, Alice is not a particularly open character, so even in her most vulnerable moments she barely invokes empathy.

    This is perhaps one of Alice’s greatest flaws. In her weakest moments, in her moments of absolute degradation and defeat, she chooses to retaliate in the worst ways imaginable. For instance, she has a long-standing feud with ex-boyfriend Luke and resident mean girl, Celeste. At first you feel sorry for Alice until you realize you aren’t dealing with a passive victim, but rather a girl who can match her attackers in cruelty step-by-step. Somewhere in the middle of the novel, Alice orchestrates a Carrie like scene and pours blood all over her arch-nemesis Celeste. If anyone remembers Stephen King’s Carrie, then they know Carrie was the victim. Here we have Alice, our protagonist, acting as bully. She was somewhat justified in wanting revenge, though I wont’ say why, but this was going too far. Alice had lost me at this point when I realized she was just as unkind as those she sought payback against.

    Though her schemes of revenge are terrible to behold, she is at her worst when interacting with friend Harvey. Here we witness an interesting role reversal, with Alice displaying features of a typical boy and Harvey displaying features of a typical girl. Personally, I enjoy these kinds of switches, finding them to adequately exploit the sillier stereotypes thrust upon both sexes. Somehow Alice manages to embody the worst of both, by playing into the trope of the emotionally manipulative female. This is the crux of the conflict, for she uses Harvey’s romantic feelings for her to her own benefit and does so because she believes she’s going to die. Once she goes into remission, she realizes there is no out and that she has to deal with a love struck boy. This is quite possibly the most perverse scenario arranged in the novel. Alice takes a very casual approach to her illness, accepting death quite easily and moving along with it. Sadly, she preys on a boy she knows is in love with her and uses him as a sort of minion who can do her bidding. While she does have real feelings for him, they are dwarfed by her extreme selfishness and the underlying cruelty needed to carry out such actions.

    If Harvey is placed in the role usually reserved for females, then it doesn’t make him any more likeable than the girls who have come before. He is an overly sentimental, lovesick boy, who though very sweet, is overbearing with his feelings. This initial reaction offers Alice some reprieve, for Harvey puts pressure on her at a time where she’s dealing with having cancer and then coming to terms with the reality that she may die. In fact, Alice is prepared to die when suddenly the rug is pulled out from underneath her and she’s told she’s in remission. She is then faced with the task of reorienting herself in a world that she had already mentally removed herself from. For him to be concerned about the status of their relationship seemed insensitive.

    Any feelings of hostility against Harvey gradually dissipate as more of their past is revealed. Alice was aware of Harvey’s feelings for her, but in many occasions allowed him to believe those feelings were reciprocated. They kissed, held hands, cuddled, and even on one occasion had sex. The level of emotional torture implemented by Alice should have been criminal. Harvey displays rare moments of courage where he stands up to her, but those are fleeting. She knows she’s in control and so does he. He transforms into a mostly pathetic character, in desperate need of a wake-up call.

    As the conflict comes to a head, Alice is called on the carpet for her bad behavior and Harvey ends all involvement with her until she can learn to cope with her feelings in an emotionally stable manner. The novel ends on a sweet note, with Alice recognizing her issues and finally taking a step forward. She does something truly kind for Harvey, and though he has every reason to sever all ties, he chooses to give her another chance.

    Overall, a gritty, yet honest tale that doesn’t shy away from the underbelly of teenage life. It’s refreshing to see characters that are not instantly likeable. Though technically a risk, it was worth taking, for the author masterfully crafts together a compelling story through solid prose and deeply flawed characters. A highly recommended read for anyone who wants to a healthy dosage of reality in their teen fiction.

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 17, 2014

    In today¿s culture there is a stereotype about cancer books¿they

    In today’s culture there is a stereotype about cancer books—they are often sentimental and sappy. Side Effects May Vary takes this
    stereotype and flips it on its head. Just when you expect to feel the heart wrenching sadness of a young girl dying of cancer,
    she goes into remission. The novels then becomes about a teenager finding herself and learning how to live. 
    The novel tells the story of Alice, a girl who is diagnosed with leukemia. She makes a list of everything she wants to do before she
    dies—essentially righting the perceived wrongs in her life. She gets revenge on her ex who cheated on her and her arch nemesis
    that she lives in competition with and who is the “other woman” in the previously mentioned cheating scenario. Along the way she
    manipulates and uses her childhood best friend—who she reconnects with once she is diagnosed and who happens to be in love
    with her. Then suddenly she goes into remission. Now she has to live with the decisions she has made and the person she has
    become—admittedly nasty. She also has to navigate the possibility of a relationship with her childhood friend, Harvey, and how she
    has used him. 
    The novel draws you in. Julie Murphy makes you feel all the emotions of the characters. By switching between Alice’s point of view
    and Harvey’s point of view you feel each of their emotions—from Alice’s struggle with life to the pain Harvey experiences due to Alice’s
     actions. She creates characters that you struggle with—you want to hate Alice, but you also see what she is going through. This
    creates a tension in the reader that we struggle to resolve. Alice was certain she was going to die; now she is going to live, but she
    doesn’t know how to handle this reality. Alice is a perfectly realized character. She moves beyond the idealized character to a character
    with real flaws. 
    This book was a perfectly painful read—one that I highly recommend. You feel the highs and lows of each moment and fair warning:
    you will probably need tissues. 

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted March 22, 2014

    This broke my heart in all the right places. Here are three reas

    This broke my heart in all the right places. Here are three reasons why you NEED this book to break yours, too:

    1. Side Effects May Vary is the morning after the storm. The sun is shining and the birds are singing, but Alice and Harvey are left standing in the doorway of a house that no longer exists, and they have to pick up the wreckage. Yeah. It's that kind of grueling.

    2. Alice shoves your other cancer books' faces into the mashed potatoes and steals their lunch money. She is raw and brutal and fierce, and she has a long way to go to become the girl who lived instead of the girl who went down fighting. We don't have nearly enough girls like Alice in YA--girls who screw up and get nasty and slowly, grudgingly recognize the distance they have to go. And I LOVE her for it.

    3. Harvey. Oh, Harvey. He is a wise old soul who nevertheless has his limits, even if it takes him a while to define them. Harvey's the best friend everyone needs, if not necessarily the one they deserve.

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted March 19, 2014

    more from this reviewer

    When I began reading Side Effects May Vary, I geared myself up f

    When I began reading Side Effects May Vary, I geared myself up for another book along the lines of The Fault in Our Stars or The F– It List. The book was neither. I wouldn’t even describe it as a combination of the two. It was entirely its own story and, while I found flaws, I also ultimately appreciated it for what it was. I wouldn’t classify this is a cancer book or a romance. Yes, it contains both, but neither truly pull the focus from the character development of what I would classify as a coming of age tale.

    If you aren’t capable of enjoying a book with a frustrating protagonist, a sweet love interest who is missing more than bit of his backbone and a storyline that might make you want to yell at the characters and rip your hair out, you might want to move along. But if you are willing to give some deeply flawed characters a chance and allow the author to make you truly detest them before coming to appreciate them as they are, you’ll want to give this one a try. Just don’t expect to find unicorns, rainbows and flowers here. You’ll find gorgeous writing, complex characters, a plot that will keep you hooked… but it’s not all happy and warm and fuzzy.

    Alice isn’t a very nice girl. I tried to put myself in her shoes, but I failed to ever truly understand why she acted as she did. I would expect someone given a second chance at life would embrace it and the people who were there for her while she was at her lowest. She did welcome the possibilities that remission brought, but she pushed away Harvey, her best friend, the boy she loved and the one who remained by her side as she battled cancer. Her family life was less than perfect and she pushed her mom and dad away as well, but that wasn’t as devastating to me as how she treated Harvey. She was manipulative. She knew how to play Harvey and didn’t hesitate to do it. It was difficult to like or relate to someone who willingly treated people she loved so badly. I know she had been through hell on Earth, something I wouldn’t wish on my worst enemy, but it still didn’t fully excuse her actions.

    Oh, Harvey. How I loved thee. But how I wanted him to get a backbone. His feelings for Alice were obvious. He never hid them. Her leukemia diagnosis was devastating to him. He was in love with her and didn’t know how to deal with the fact that she wouldn’t be around for the life he wanted with her. But, as sad as he was, he was there for her every step of the way, no matter how ugly it all got. He was a fantastic guy, a great friend and the boyfriend any girl would want to have. To see him so hopeful at Alice’s second chance, only to have those hopes squashed by Alice’s actions broke my heart. He really did deserve better than Alice was capable of giving him. He tried to move on, but it’s difficult to do so when the person you love keeps pushing your buttons and then, just as quickly, pushing you away.

    Side Effects May Vary was told from both Alice’s and Harvey’s POV. It was also told in both past and present tense. This setup could have been tremendously confusing, but I never got bogged down in it. As a matter of fact, I appreciated learning the whole picture. Each character had a clear voice. The multiple POVs allowed me to get inside each character’s head and try to understand their motivations. I truly felt for both of them. Their pain and confusion came through on every page. I found myself entirely invested in their story and was all but yelling at them through the course of the book. Any time an author can make me feel this much – good, bad and everything in between – I have to give them credit. I’m a feeler when I read, so it’s not uncommon for me to cry when reading, but it’s a little more uncommon for me to seriously dislike a character, but still be so very invested in them. I was, without a doubt, invested in Alice. I loved Harvey. That was never a question. Together they were complicated. Sometimes frustrating, often sweet and their interactions made me feel. A lot.

    Ultimately, I just wanted Alice and Harvey to find happiness, regardless of whether it was together or not. I wanted them each to admit to their faults and grow. I wanted this to be a story that left me with a sense of hope. By the end, each of my wishes were granted, but boy, it was a bumpy ride.

    I received a copy of this book from the publisher, via Edelweiss, in exchange for an honest review. 

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