Sunday, December 11, 2011

The Probability of Miracles-Wendy Wunder

The Probability of Miracles

Wendy Wunder

Razorbill, Dec 8 2011, $17.99

ISBN: 9781595143686

Sixteen years old Cam Cooper knows she is dying from terminal cancer. She wants to enjoy her final countdown in Florida with her Flamingo List of things to do before dying rather than spend more time in hospitals as she has for the last seven years. However, her widow mom Alicia refuses to give up the battle while Cam begins her final checklist robbing a plastic flamingo.

When Cam’s doctor tells her mom she needs to pray for a miracle, Alicia pursues the miracle rather than wait for heavenly intervention. She takes Cam and her tweener other child Perry to Promise, Maine; a place that can only be found through a Dunkin’ Donuts shop. Cynical about the relocation to find a miracle, Cam is happy to see her cancer peer and BFF Lily though both know the second F in their friendship will be short. She meets and is attracted to enigmatic Asher, who gives the teenager preparing to die hope that perhaps Promise will provide the elusive miracle.

The powerful cast makes for a superb profound character study. Cam is terrific as she loathes but accepts the inevitable. The support characters enhance the deep tale as her mom refuses to surrender her endeavor to save her child and her sister is mature and stoic. Other players like her cancer comrade Lily and Asher support Cam’s bid to die normal while helping her find hope. Avoiding melodrama with some jocularity, this is obviously not an easy read, The Probability of Miracles is an insightful teen tale as life may suck but it is our only life.

Harriet Klausner

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