Monday, April 16, 2012

My Thoughts: The Probability of Miracles by Wendy Wunder

December 8, 2011
Razorbill, 360 pages, hardcover
GR Summary: 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.

A debut novel from an immensely talented new writer, The Probability of Miracles crackles with wit, romance and humor and will leave readers laughing and crying with each turn of the page.

This one, I knew, would be a hard one for me to read. A story about a girl who has terminal cancer? Who is basically just counting down the days she has left and trying to muster all the positivity (is there any?) she can to enjoy her very limited time? How can one see the light in anything when your body is just a ticking time bomb?

Cam is quite an abrasive, sarcastic young lady. She has accepted her fate and is horribly annoyed by the fact that her crazy mother and ever-optimistic sister have not yet done the same. Cam's outlook was both refreshing and depressing. Refreshing in that her five stages of grief are spent. She's given up on fighting, which you don't see very much in YA books. She just wants to live the remainder of her days fulfilling her Flamingo List (like a Bucket List, but with less reputable tasks.)

But crazy mom and sunshine & rainbows sister will not allow this. Nope. They've heard of this place in Maine (aptly named Promise) where miracles supposedly happen. OH YES and they insist on Cam tagging along. This could be her cure, after all. And isn't that what we do, when faced with circumstances such as these? No matter how bad things get, we always try and tell ourselves that this isn't "it." That there's still, always, hope.

Cam gets way more than she bargained for on this trip. Namely Asher, a townie who believes in the superstitions of Promise. As you can imagine, love ensues. But it's not sad. It's HOPEFUL, damnit. And it's so heartbreakingly beautiful. I can only think of A Walk to Remember when I think of this book. But instead of Mandy Moore the pastor's daughter, we have a awesome, self-embracing bitch who is slowly dying and deserves love just like anyone else.

This book will grasp your heart tightly in its vice-like fist.


  1. LOVED LOVED LOVED this book! You're review is fantastic!

  2. I'm thinking of reading this one for my Contemporary Month. But I get all clinchy when I think of sad-type books. Especially since I read TFiOS a few weeks ago and then A Monster Calls the day after TFiOS. So...

    But WOW what a pretty cover, right??

  3. SO glad you enjoyed this book too. It was so crazy good. And also just plain crazy.

  4. What a great review! I agree, this book was amazing - I read it right after TFiOS, if you can imagine. What a week! :)

  5. This book was seriously amazing and I loved every minute of reading it. I did, of course, bawl like a baby at the end. For that matter, I could be found bawling at a few different points in the story, but I'm also going through personal stuff so I have a feeling that had a lot to do with it too.

  6. I'm not sure if I could handle reading this book knowing the MC has terminal cancer. I'm sure I would be crying in no time at all. It does sound like a beautifully told story though. Thanks for the review!

  7. Oh, gosh, I feel on the verge of tears already. You JUST HAD TO GO AND MAKE THE WALK TO REMEMBER REFERENCE. Dammit, Jen, low. BLOW. If it's anything like that, I'm recoiling internally even as I'm oohing and aahing. And BOY'S GOT MY NAME. That might be fun ;)