Side Effects May Vary by Julie Murphy



When sixteen-year-old Alice is diagnosed

with acute lymphocytic leukemia, she vows

to spend her final months righting wrongs.

So she convinces her best friend Harvey,

who’s loved her forever, to help with

compiling a crazy just-dying-to-do bucket

list, that’s as much about revenge as it is

about redemption. But just when Alice’s

scores are settled, she goes into remission.

Now she must face the consequences of all

she’s said and done and discover just what

happens when we say our ‘final’ words, only

to find that life isn’t through with us yet.

SOURCE:  egalley via Edelweiss/publisher

Story Breakdown:

Alice is diagnosed with leukemia and decides to start checking things off her to-do list so that when she dies she won’t have any regrets but then the unimaginable happens.  She goes into remission (much to her dismay) and has to answer for what she has done.

Character Highlights:

Alice – This girl right here is the true definition of bitch which is hard to admit since she is the person who was dying of leukemia.

Harvey – Harvey is hands down the complete opposite of Alice.  I felt so bad for him because he would do anything for her no matter if he was just her doormat.

Overall Thoughts:

I had so many mixed feelings about this book.  Parts I loved but there were so many parts I questioned.  I didn’t understand Alice’s logic for most of her decisions, her undeniable anger at her mother for something she wasn’t allowed to defend herself for (but when said topic was discussed it felt rushed and for the amount of time and effort she thought about it she forgave way too fast), the way she strung Harvey along and expected him to wait on her hand and foot, SIGH.  There are so many more things, I just don’t know. . .I felt horrible most of the book because I truly hated Alice though to be fair I hated a few other people in the book as well.





6 thoughts on “Side Effects May Vary by Julie Murphy

  1. bookgoonie May 16, 2014 at 7:54 pm Reply

    That’s hard. To hate a person with cancer. Makes me ponder whether to read. Who needs that kind of guilt?

    • Kristina May 16, 2014 at 7:58 pm Reply


      Sent from my iPhone


  2. Nicole @ The Quiet Concert May 23, 2014 at 12:09 pm Reply

    I’ve seen a bunch of mixed feelings for this book and I can’t decide if I want to read it or not. From what I see, I am afraid I will hate Alice too. 😦

    • Kristina May 23, 2014 at 1:01 pm Reply

      It’s a tough call on this one but I’d rec passing.

  3. Jess @ Gone with the Words May 27, 2014 at 8:44 am Reply

    I pretty much felt the same way about Alice. Like, why are you SO damn unflinchingly angry, girl?! She was relentless. And I loved Harvey at first, but when he wouldn’t stand up for himself, I kind of lost that. I was glad in the end something was done, but still. I think I gave it 3 stars too. It wasn’t a bad story, it was really well written, but it made me mad, lol.

    • Kristina May 27, 2014 at 4:29 pm Reply

      Right. I felt horrible hating someone who was sick too.

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