The Probability of Miracles

The Probability of Miracles

by Wendy Wunder

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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781595144805
Publisher: Penguin Young Readers Group
Publication date: 07/05/2012
Pages: 368
Sales rank: 549,226
Product dimensions: 5.40(w) x 8.10(h) x 1.10(d)
Age Range: 14 Years

About the Author

Wendy Wunder (yes, that is her real name) is also the author of The Museum of Intangible Things. When she's not writing or spending time with her family, she teaches yoga in Boston.

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The Probability of Miracles 4.3 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 82 reviews.
epicrat More than 1 year ago
Dandelions, flamingoes, and a town named Promise? Everything about The Probability Of Miracles sounds too good to be true. Improbably so. And yet. somehow Wendy Wunder pulls you into this story with main character whose doubts outnumber her dreams and leaves you wanting to believe that wishes can come true. THE GOOD BITS {Cam's humor with the perfect dash of sarcasm.} Without a doubt, this story would be way different if there had been any less snark - or if there had been too much. Maybe more melancholy, maybe more tragic, but definitely a lot less enjoyable. Cam and I share the same sort of humor - the same reflex to crack a joke, even during the worst of times - the same need to guard ourselves from heartbreak and disappointment, even when happiness seems possible. Which made it a lot easier for me to sink into The Probability Of Miracles and follow Cam as her shields start to melt. {The bucket list.} What an ambitious to-do list! Delectably realistic that ranges from the simple to silly to emotionally-fragile. Life is all about risks, and living is all about taking them - or choosing not to. Cam makes a list of experiences that she considers "normal" for a teenager which involves breaking both hearts and rules. I loved how you never quite knew how certain items would play out. {Little sister Perry.} I loved this little cupcake of a girl! Not too young to fade into the background, not too old to make the drama into a catfight. She provided some comic relief when Cam turned into a regular Grumpy. I also have to admire Perry's cheerful-but-tough exterior. She reminds me a little of Scrappy Doo: tiny, adorable, and wise beyond her years. THE BAD BITS {Almost too perfect?} I honestly cannot complain too much about The Probability Of Miracles being too perfect - because I wouldn't want it any other way. Wendy Wunder dished out the right balance between good and bad news, and while sometimes the good news felt too good to be true, I think it reflects how life can sometimes hand you lemonade when hope seems like a big joke. THE OVERALL If I learned anything from The Probability Of Miracles, it is that hope can be persistent, especially when you have loved ones. Quirky, unexpected, sarcastic, bittersweet, and altogether full of life, this story will steal your breath away - from laughing, from crying, and from sheer wonder when Promise, Maine, lives up to its name.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Hi everybody! I am twelve now and I read this book when i was eleven. I love this book and there are so many reasons why! The top two being that my sister has a rare disease that eats away her bones, therefore making it relatable, and this book is amazibgly written and never lets you get bored. TEN MILLION STARS!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
A really truely awesome book . Not your average cheesey teen book. You'll laugh , you'll cry .... you'll be inspired. Love , love , love! Read it!
Jenny_Geek More than 1 year ago
First of all, I really enjoy that the author's name is Wendy Wunder. I can't help but think of how well it coincides with what her book is about, miracles and believing in them. The main character, Cam, has been dealing with cancer for seven long years. When the story starts, she has just received news that her cancer is still spreading. Her mother and younger sister refuse to give up on her, even though Cam has pretty much given up, and they move her to Promise, Maine which has been deemed a miraculous place because of all the events that occur there. Oh goodness, I'm starting to cry while I'm typing this... Cam is already starting to think about how her family will have to move on without her and how life will have go on. I understood her dry humor, because it was her way of dealing with her impending death. I can't imagine have to deal with the horrors of cancer as a young person. As someone who stood on the sidelines and never gave up hope even though cancer took my grandmother 8 years ago, I can't help but feel for Cam's mother and sister. They never stopped believing or giving up hope. I know just how hard it is to accept that a beloved family member is going to die and have to watch them slowly deteriorate. I also completely empathized with Cam's younger sister for having to take the backseat and make a lot of sacrifices for the health of her older sister. I dearly understood her anger with Cam when she wouldn't believe that miracles could happen. I loved watching Cam grow emotionally throughout this book. I will say the only drawback was that the romance between her and Asher started out slow, but then suddenly felt rushed. I had a hard time accepting that in the story. This is a tough story, but well worth the read. I received this book for free in exchange for an honest review.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
A fantastic novel. Heartfelt without being sappy, hilarious without being silly. And the writing is so good...it's obvious the author clearly cares not just about her characters, but about every word.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I really did like this book. Not one of my favorites or anything, but i's pretty good. I like how it's different. Like a girl growing up in Disneyland? That's pretty unique and cool. But honestly, I didn't like Cam for the majority of the story. She was funny, and honest, but I just didn't get why she couldn't at least try for her family. Though, I did end up liking her more towards the end. I also liked her bucketlist. It wasn't your typical go sky-diving and bunjee-jumping bucketlist. It was different, and I really like the freshness of it. But overall, it was pretty good. Sad, but not heartbreaking (since I saw it coming the whole time). A really nice book. Plus, I loved the cover and the colors.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Its beautiful like a summer sunset
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I an aunt of a fifteen year old girl and am often searching for books she will enjoy that I can also support -- The Probability of Miracles is it. Beautifully written, with a strong voice and hilarious, original characters. Although the main character is dying, she is so ALIVE, you nearly forget it. Truly a book about living. This was my favorite YA book of 2011, and my niece's as well! We can't wait to read what is next from Wendy Wunder.
BrandisBookMusings on LibraryThing 17 days ago
Campbell is sarcastic, cynical, and dying.She has accepted it, she just wishes her mother and sister would. She has stage four cancer and there is no more chemo, no more trials, no hope, nothing. In a last ditch effort her mother takes advice from the family pot smoking hippie friend and heads to Promise, Maine. The land of hope lies in a town you couldn't find on a map with a magnifying glass. Promise is the home to everlasting sunsets, purple dandelions, and miracles. Cam doesn't believe in God and she certainly doesn't believe some tiny town is going to provide her with a cure. She believes in science. Everything boils down to a probability, and just maybe, Promise, Maine has a higher probability of miracles. She has a list to complete, a hot neighbor to deal with, and a family who will have to go on withou her. This is the summer Cam learned to live.This isn't normally the type of book I read. i like supernatural and paranormal stories where possibilities are endless. Every now and then we need a dose of real life, with real people, and real problems. The Probability of Miracles delivers just that. I laughed out loud, I got angry, and I cried right along with Cam. This is a story about finding hope and accepting and living life to the fullest. I can only hope that I will live as much in my lifetime as Cam did in this book.
stephxsu on LibraryThing 17 days ago
The writing was decent, the premise interesting, but something just felt...lacking. Heart, perhaps? Whatever it was, while I sympathized with Campbell's situation, I never really emphasized with her, with the result that my eyes glazed over as I skimmed through her theoretically cool journey, until I realized that I'd be pleasantly happy if Campbell got a happy ending, but didn't feel close enough to go out of my way to find out what happens.
Kr15tina on LibraryThing 17 days ago
What I LikedGenreI usually don't read contemporary fiction, but I was pleasantly surprised with the book. I found myself enthralled with the humorous characters, the sad situation for our main character and the journey of personal growth.CharacterCam: I enjoyed Cam's attitude problems, she is witty, sarcastic and can come up with some interesting things. I also liked the progression of her character throughout the book.Supporting Characters: The rest of the characters, her mom, sister, Nana, Asher, friends and random people all added a humorous element that completely enhanced the story with their interesting interactions with Cam.LessonsEven though I felt sad and sorry for the Cam, the book isn't really about that. The story is about learning to appreciate your life and to not take things for granted. Life is too short to waste. The book puts life into perspective and makes you contemplate where you are going and what you are going to be doing. It also serves as good reminder to live in the present moment.I Didn't LikeI cried at the end, lets just leave it at that. Recommendation A great book for people who love YA contemporary, but if you are willing to step out of your comfort reads away for fantasy this would be a good book to try.
theepicrat on LibraryThing 17 days ago
Dandelions, flamingoes, and a town named Promise? Everything about The Probability Of Miracles sounds too good to be true. Improbably so. And yet¿ somehow Wendy Wunder pulls you into this story with main character whose doubts outnumber her dreams and leaves you wanting to believe that wishes can come true.THE GOOD BITS{Cam¿s humor with the perfect dash of sarcasm.} Without a doubt, this story would be way different if there had been any less snark ¿ or if there had been too much. Maybe more melancholy, maybe more tragic, but definitely a lot less enjoyable. Cam and I share the same sort of humor ¿ the same reflex to crack a joke, even during the worst of times ¿ the same need to guard ourselves from heartbreak and disappointment, even when happiness seems possible. Which made it a lot easier for me to sink into The Probability Of Miracles and follow Cam as her shields start to melt.{The bucket list.} What an ambitious to-do list! Delectably realistic that ranges from the simple to silly to emotionally-fragile. Life is all about risks, and living is all about taking them ¿ or choosing not to. Cam makes a list of experiences that she considers ¿normal¿ for a teenager which involves breaking both hearts and rules. I loved how you never quite knew how certain items would play out.{Little sister Perry.} I loved this little cupcake of a girl! Not too young to fade into the background, not too old to make the drama into a catfight. She provided some comic relief when Cam turned into a regular Grumpy. I also have to admire Perry¿s cheerful-but-tough exterior. She reminds me a little of Scrappy Doo: tiny, adorable, and wise beyond her years.THE BAD BITS{Almost too perfect?} I honestly cannot complain too much about The Probability Of Miracles being too perfect ¿ because I wouldn¿t want it any other way. Wendy Wunder dished out the right balance between good and bad news, and while sometimes the good news felt too good to be true, I think it reflects how life can sometimes hand you lemonade when hope seems like a big joke.THE OVERALLIf I learned anything from The Probability Of Miracles, it is that hope can be persistent, especially when you have loved ones. Quirky, unexpected, sarcastic, bittersweet, and altogether full of life, this story will steal your breath away ¿ from laughing, from crying, and from sheer wonder when Promise, Maine, lives up to its name.
andreablythe on LibraryThing 17 days ago
When the bad news comes down that there is nothing more the doctors can do for Cam's cancer, her mom insists its not over and drags her daughter up to Promise, Maine, a mysterious town that is supposed to be capable of granting miracles. Though Cam is an avid disbeliever, certain that everything has a scientific explanation, she can't help but admit that strange things -- a field of purple daisies, flamingos well outside their natural ecosystem, a boy who seems to magically appear to help at the exact perfect moment -- do happen in Promise. I love Cam. She has a snarky tone and always throws out random science facts, which was fun. She was sympathetic and had her down moment, but she's not a complainer or much of a moper. She's simply matter of fact about her situation and her reality. I also really loved the mom, who was presented as a mom should be, very loving of her daughter and practical where practicality is needed. It's refreshing to see a parent in a YA novel not be absent or a complete idiot. She's a part of the story and a part of Cam. So is Cam's sister, who is cheerful and girly and wonderfully surprising at times. I loved the mixture of miraculous and scientific in this book, which allows you to choose for yourself whether you believe the events can all be explained or if there is some mystical influence taking place. It's a wonderful, joyful, heartbreaking story, that will definitely go on my list of favorites.
SherylHendrix on LibraryThing 17 days ago
A bright and poignant coming-of-age story for a young girl whose imminent death focuses her choices in life; she gains, she loses, but ultimately one is left with the impression that she had learned to die well and, as a result, her family will be left with - not pieces to pick up - but wonderful memories of a young woman who loved them and loved life.
squirrelsohno on LibraryThing 17 days ago
THE PROBABILITY OF MIRACLES arrived mysteriously at my door one December day. Cancer is a sticky situation in my family right now. I went to the ER last night with my grandfather and grabbed this book on my way out the door. My grandfather has Stage IV colorectal cancer and has gotten progressively weaker the past few weeks. While I finished this book in one sitting while waiting for 12 hours in the ER, my parents were told that all that science can do has been exhausted and that they were calling in hospice (for a second time). Somehow, reading the story of Campbell Cooper and her ordeals with being told this by her oncologist that there is nothing else to be done, made things a little easier on me.The story revolves around Cam, a rebellious teenager who has had cancer for several years and gone through every treatment known to man. When the doctor tells her they¿ve exhausted their options and that the end is near, her mother takes one last step ¿ packs Cam and her sister Perry up and moves them from the shadow of Disney World to the tiny, hidden town of Promise, Maine, known for its miracles. And things in Promise are strange ¿ flamingoes randomly appearing, sunsets that last forever, and a boy that sweeps Cam off her feet when she thinks that she¿s never going to be able to love.There are many ¿miracles¿ in Cam¿s life, and exploring how letting go, accepting fate, and living her life to the fullest is touching. Her family and friends are for the most part fully fleshed out, with a few exceptions. I loved Cam and her spunk, even though her constant dirges about death got annoying after awhile. While this book could have dealt with the topic in so many different ways (the topic being death), the path it took was wonderful, heartbreaking, and heartwarming at all the same time. If I hadn¿t been in a hospital faced with some really hot doctors, I might have cried a little at parts.Cam is an amazing character. Paired with writing that flows well without excessive flourishes, THE PROBABILITY OF MIRACLES becomes a solid debut novel from an author that will definitely be one to watch. But I did have a few issues with it. At times I felt detached from the characters, particularly during a strong moment where Cam has to come to grips with the reality of a friendship, and at the end I wasn¿t hit as hard as I could have been. The end was also slightly ambiguous in my mind, which left a gaping hole of wonder as to what really happened. Then again, it was 1 AM and I¿d been listening to beeping instruments all day. Not fun.Overall, THE PROBABILITY OF MIRACLES was a heartwarming novel. Dealing with cancer in the family right now, it gave me a look through a different set of eyes and filled my soul with hope. But even if you¿re not in the same boat as me, it is definitely a novel full of charm and miracles. You will get lost in its pages and find hope at the end.VERDICT: Even though it deals with a very hard topic, THE PROBABILITY OF MIRACLES is heartwarming, enchanting, and full of life. If you like your hard hitting contemporary mixed with warm aspects, this book is for you.
meags222 on LibraryThing 17 days ago
I picked up this book because it has been getting a lot of attention lately. I have to say that when I first started reading it I was unsure if I would like this book but as I continued reading I found that I couldn't put this book down. I had read something similar recently about a dying teen and I wasn't sure if I could handle another one. That being said, I loved the character of Cam and her crazy entourage. The book picked up after Cam moves to Promise, Maine in her family's hopes that a miracle may change her terminal diagnosis. Cam is the ultimate teen who is broody and impulsive at times but she also has a kind of maturity most likely gained from cancer treatment and knowing that she has limited time on this earth. After moving to Maine, Cam meets Asher who is just about the sweetest guy a girl could meet. Throughout the novel you almost forget that Cam is sick and you can't help but laugh at the predicaments she gets herself into. This is another book that actually evoked some tears from me (which I swear doesn't usually happen when reading). I definitely recommend this book and I give it 4.5 stars out of 5.
ctmsjisc on LibraryThing 17 days ago
Your mother has tried everything, nothing has worked. The cancer just won't stop. Your last chance is to go to a town called Promise that supposedly grants miracles. You have to up and leave your home for something that may not even work. You've given up all hope.This is Cam's life. She has struggled with cancer the past couple of years. The cancer has moved all over her body. The doctors say there really isn't much more that they can do.Cam's mother finds out about a secret town in Maine that grants miracles. Cam, her sister, and her mother pack up from their house in Florida and plan on staying in this small town for the summer, hoping it will help Cam.While in Promise, the name of the miracle town, Cam experience ¿Miracles¿. Cam refuses to call the things that happen miracles. Cam get's to stay in a house and she doesn't have to pay for it, she sees Flamingos in Maine, Cam find love, but the biggest miracle is that Cam makes friends, and almost forgets about the cancer.I give The Probability of Miracles three and a half stars. The book had a good concept and the miracles were captivating but there were things I didn't like about the book.The author really had a good idea for the book. I loved the whole idea and the plot of the story but things were repetitive. Cam would have things happen to her and they were the same kind of things over and over gain. After about the third ¿Miracle¿ I got bored. Something god would happen to Cam and then something bad, it was the same thing over and over again.The author made the characters very realistic. The characters acted like annoying tween sisters, and trying not to be charming but is anyways guys. The characters were spot on. The one thing I did and didn't like about the characters was Cam. I got that she acted like she had given up hope and she was a ¿Debby Downer¿, but after a while her character got really annoying and I didn't like her very much.The main thing I liked about this book was the romance. There was a little bit of it, as there is with any novel that has a teenage girl in it. I liked how the relationship between Cam and the boy she liked. I really liked how their relationship tied in with the women that have stayed in the house that Cam did before her.Overall The Probability of Miracles was a good book with a few flaws. It was Adventurous, fun, and cute. But in the end it was like eating the same thing for dinner every night, after a while you get bored.
myheartheartsbooks on LibraryThing 17 days ago
Dry, sarcastic, sixteen-year-old Cam Cooper has spent the last seven years in and out hospitals. The last thing she wants to do in the short life she has left is move 1,500 miles away to Promise, Maine - a place known for the miraculous events that occur there. But it¿s undeniable that strange things happen in Promise: everlasting sunsets; purple dandelions; flamingoes in the frigid Atlantic; an elusive boy named Asher; and finally, a mysterious envelope containing a list of things for Cam to do before she dies. As Cam checks each item off the list, she finally learns to believe - in love, in herself, and even in miracles.Reactions in 3 steps.1. By page 48 fighting tears2. By page 78 teared up twice3. By the end of the novel, I couldn¿t stop crying, but I also couldn¿t stop smilingReview: This is one of those rare books that makes your life better by reading. I promise you, there is a probable chance that you will cry. Booth happy tears and sad tears. This story is about Campbell, a realist teen, a maybe a little jaded, as a result of her diagnosis of a terminal cancer. She realizes that she¿ll die sooner rather than later. While Campbell doesn¿t believe in miracle, there has to be a reasonable explanation for everything, she goes along with her mother¿s crazy shenanigans because she realizes that it¿s what her mother needs, her mother needs hope¿even if that means trekking their family (Campbell, Campbell¿s mother Alicia, and Campbell¿s younger sister Perry) to Promise, Maine, where miracles happen. In Promise, Campbell attempts to complete her ¿Flamingo List¿ that her best friend Lily made her create. The last thing Campbell expects is Asher. In the course of that summer Campbell and Asher help each other truly live.Wender Wunder did an amazing job with her debut novel. Being from Osceola County, Fl where this novel begins, reading this novel was like being taken on a tour of my hometown without having to leave my bedroom. This is one of those novels that you can truly envision, while reading it, you can almost close your eyes and just be transported on Campbell¿s journey alongside her. Wunder also does a wonderful job really getting into the mindset of not only a teenager, but a teenage battling this disease, and in return the reader can understand how this disease effects Campbell¿s view of the world and you understand why she does the things that she does and says the things that she says. Somehow while reading this novel, Campbell stops being a character, she becomes a friend that you root for, the brutally honest friend that you need in your life.
haharissa on LibraryThing 17 days ago
I absolutely loved The Probability of Miracles. The protagonist was witty and sarcastic, without being so witty and sarcastic that you didn't like her. It was very easy to sympathize with Cam and her situation, and I always felt like I my mood matched hers throughout the story. When Cam was being cynical, it was easy to feel cynical right along with her; when she was upset I was upset; She didn¿t understand her mom¿s relationship with Izanagi until the end, and neither did I; when she fell in love with Asher, I fell in love with Asher. It was so easy to put yourself in her shoes and understand what she was going through, and most of the novel was very lighthearted despite the overarching cancer theme.This book could have you laughing one moment and crying the next. There were multiple times while reading when I would literally burst out laughing at the situations that Cam got herself into. They were hilarious and improbable situations, but they never felt forced, like the author was trying to be funny, because it just fit within Cam¿s personality that this kind of thing would happen to her.I loved almost every other character in the book too, with the exception of Alec, because they were all given their own unique personalities that blended so well together. Perry was a typical tweenager, at Cam¿s throat one moment and super sweet little sister the next. Nana was hilarious, definitely not your typical grandma, but that fit given Cam¿s family life at home. Asher was, as Cam often describes him, perfect. He was easy to love ¿.Overall, I thoroughly enjoyed this book and would highly recommend it to anyone.
perchance.cl on LibraryThing 17 days ago
Wunder's book is, well, wonderful. Cam's wit and sarcasm was unexpected in the face of such tragedy, but it felt very natural. The writing just flows off the page. When I wasn't laughing, I was crying. The ability to draw so many emotions from a reader shows great skill. I can't wait to read more from this very talented writer.
tipsister on LibraryThing 17 days ago
The Probability of Miracles is a very special book. It made me cry which is always a good sign because it means I grew to love the characters. The story is about Cam, a seventeen year old with cancer. She¿s been fighting and surviving for years until she receives the news that there isn¿t anything more the doctors can do. Medically, they¿ve reached the bottom of the barrel.Cam deals with the news in a typical Cam way. She acts tough and strong. Her mother decides to take Cam and her younger sister to a town in Maine that is known for it¿s miracles. Cam doesn¿t believe in Miracles but she is charmed by the odd little town and quickly sets about making miracles for other people. This story is really, very lovely. The characters are all fantastic and really feel authentic. Wendy Wunder created a little town that I¿d like to visit. One where the sun rises and sets in the same place, dandelions are purple, and whales leap at the same time every night. This story will make you wish for a miracle too.
renkellym on LibraryThing 17 days ago
The Probability of Miracles is a bittersweet and inspiring tale of the last few months of a teen¿s life. Make no mistake, though--The Probability of Miracles is not a sad, sappy sobfest. There are plenty of hilarious, hopeful, and sweet moments that will help relieve the stress that comes with reading about a cancer patient. This is especially because Cam, the protagonist, doesn¿t act mopey or sick at all! She¿s an incredibly enjoyable heroine, and her quirky world-view brightens the book. Though Cam can also be cynical and borderline depressed, it¿s easy for the reader to accept these aspects of her personality because of how tough her life has been (but Cam is the last person who¿d want your sympathy!). Additionally, Cam¿s cynicism is also usually the source of the laugh-worthy moments in the book, so it isn¿t often anything to frown at. The story moves along at a perfect pace¿quite a lot happens in The Probability of Miracles, but nothing seems too fast or too slow. Wendy Wunder effortlessly invokes the teenage voice and tells the story in third person, but we get to know Cam as well as we would were the narration first person. Cam¿s joy and pain are palpable as the story goes along, and it¿s impossible not to feel as if you¿re connected to her by the end. Wunder¿s writing is also something to marvel at: her prose is lovely, and she really knows how to capture the reader. The Probability of Miracles sets out to tell readers that hope and determination can create miracles, even if they are only temporary¿you just have to believe. I think it succeeds in this endeavor: I finished the book with a tear in my eye and a lump in my throat, but I was also left with a lingering sense of resolution and hopefulness. The Probability of Miracles will make you laugh and make you cry; Wendy Wunder manipulates the reader¿s emotions like a master puppeteer in this brilliant coming-of-age story. Highly recommended!
flashlight_reader on LibraryThing 17 days ago
BEAUTIFUL. Simply beautiful.I had no idea what to expect when I started this book. I don't typically like books that tend to be heavy. I like my books light and fluffy. Afterall, they are my escape. The synopsis does a pretty good job of summarizing the book, but it doesn't tell you how beautiful the writing is. (sigh)I loved Cam and Asher. I loved Nana and Pery. All of the characters were great and did such a great job of complimenting one another. Nana is hilarious. I found it hilarious that she got Cam to steal a leaf off a sacred tree that had "healing powers," but she ran off in the middle of the heist because she saw her arch nemesis. So funny. Pery is your typical teeny bopper. She's playful and innocent, but also incomplete.Cam and Asher were mesmerizing. Cam was sarcastic and real. You could feel her fear and insecurity. I totally understood why she was trying to protect herself (her heart). And I LOVED how she changed throughout the book. It was so heartwarming. Asher is a little different. He's not dying like Cam is, but he is guarded. He has a fear of loss, so it's hard for him to leave Promise. He feels like if he leaves his mystical home, everything will come crashing down on him. All of these characters were flawed and real. More real than I could have imagined. Their imperfections were captivating.The plot is pretty straight forward in this book. Cam is dying. In a final effort to find a saving miracle, her mother packs the entire family up and goes to the mystical Promise, Maine because she has heard magical things happen there. Cam is skeptical and guarded at first. She's an odd one (she asked to adopt a lobster from a local sea food restaurant) and doesn't want to get attached to anyone or anything because she knows she won't be around much longer. Somehow, though, things start to change. She slowly decides that maybe pretending to believe in miracles will help her family. There are some hilarious antics with Cam's forced miracles. My favorite being when she kidnapped the vet's donkey, James Madison, and doused him in flour and duct taped an aluminum foil horn to his head in order to fake a unicorn sighting for her younger sister. So. Funny. Of course, that event didn't turn out the way she wanted (like most things in her life), but it proved to be monumental. It was almost like it was the catalyst for her change of heart. And what a change it was.There are no magical healings in the book. Cam does not overcome her sickness. It was very tragic and so real. I cried while reading the final 40+ pages. I didn't cry out of sadness though. The writing was so beautiful that it brought tears to my eyes. But most importantly, the transformation that Cam-- as a person-- had undergone was what was so amazing. I expected to be so overwhelmed with grief at her passing, but I wasn't. Instead, there was an unbelievable sense of completeness and closure. I can't put into words how the end of the book moved me. The emotions that I felt while reading are too much for simple words. But I can honestly say, it was one of the most beautiful books I have ever read.I know there is a lot of discussion about YA books being "too dark." I would counter that argument with this book. Yes, the material is very sad and heavy, but it's not dark. It's a beautiful story of hope and change. Yes, the main character dies in the end, but it's not a sad ending. It gives hope and closure to a part of life that seems to be avoided because it brings so much grief. This is a must read. Plain and simple. You owe it to yourself to read this book, and experience the beauty of this story.
karen813 on LibraryThing 17 days ago
This was a beautifully written book that made me think about what it means to really live your life. I was not sure I even wanted to read this book because books about dying children or teens are usually too much for me. I find them unbearably sad and usually too heavy. I was pleasantly surprised that although the subject matter was sad the author still managed to inject some lightness in the book. I loved watching the relationship between Cam and Asher develop and watching Cam help Asher learn to live. I found Cam to be refreshingly real and I loved her sarcastic wit. I was glad to see Cam come out of her shell and do the things she really wanted to do without regard for her disease. Through her willingness to live her life no matter what she taught Asher and her family to not be afraid to try things. I would have loved to see more development of Cam's relationship with Lily but that was my only complaint about this very well written book. I still find the subject matter sad and heavy and I probably won't seek out more books about dying kids, but I will look for more books from Wendy Wunder in the future.
JulieDillard on LibraryThing 17 days ago
I was instantly enamored with Cam, the main character in Wendy Wunder's The Probability of Miracles. In the first pages, the pop culture references, Cam's keen eye for detail and subtle, biting humor reminded me of James Joyce's famous idea that "in the particular is contained the universal." Cam's situation may not be universal, but Wunder's skillful crafting of a teen voice that is at once jaded and fresh puts me squarely in her world. I adore books that make me laugh *and* cry--and The Probability of Miracles is one of those gems. My first laugh came with the line "...it could get you into a buttload of trouble if you admitted to anyone that you thought the Virgin Mary probably just got knocked p like 20 percent of the teenage girls in Florida. That was an idea you kept to yourself." Contrast that with the emotion on the next page as Cam notes that "a sick, bald-headed two-year-old in a pink dress slept on the shoulder of her father, who walked in a daze toward the family's SUV, probably wondering how this had possibly become his life." Cam is a relatable, yet one-of-a-kind character. She's sharp and soft--wise for her years, but I think pain and longing will do that to a girl for whom "details stuck inside her brain like spitballs to a chalkboard." This is a book that will stick with me and I look forward to sharing it with high school students in my class. The pop-culture references, surprising humor, and emotional intensity are sure to be a hit.