Genre/Format/pages: Young Adult Contemporary genre, Audiobook provided by the publisher, Audio length: 8 hours, 7 minutes, read by Emma Galvin. Also available in Hardcover (336 pages)
Rating: 5 / 5 Stars
Campbell (Cam) Cooper has been battling cancer for years, but now her doctor says only a miracle can save her now. Cam is realistic about her chances and starts to pull out her “flamingo list”, a checklist of tasks to perform before she dies. Cam’s mother says not so fast, and moves the family to Promise, Maine, a place where magical events occur, to try to find that elusive miracle.
Wow, I didn’t expect to read one of my favorite books of the year in December. But this emotional, bittersweet, yet surprisingly uplifting story took me on quite a journey. Going into the book, I worried that it would be too depressing. And though cancer is always looming over the story, there are many very funny, sweet, and touching moments that keep it from being too much of a downer. I felt invested in Cam’s story from the first lines and it kept me riveted all the way through.
Cam’s voice is one of the things I loved about the book. She’s sarcastic, tough, and accepting of her fate. She’s smart, loves animals, works in the kitchen at Disney World, and later at the vet, and doesn’t curl up in a ball of despair. She loves her friends and family and is protective of them and wants to see them happy.
The town of Promise is really special; from the community of new friends Cam joins, to Asher, the sweet guy who’s there for her when she needs him, to all the magical events that happen in the town. And the animals in the book really steal the show at times and contribute greatly to the magical feeling of the book. Cam’s best friend Lily, and hilarious Nana were also standout characters.
In addition to the Promise location setting, the story starts out in Florida, where Cam and her Mom Alicia have jobs at Disney World. It was fun reading the behind the scenes info about working for Disney, and the role it plays in her family’s life.
Emma Galvin, who is one of the best YA audio narrators around, reads the audiobook. She also narrated Divergent, and I had to shake off the feeling that Tris has cancer at first. But, seriously, this narrator has the perfect voice for Cam, and conveys her sarcasm and the necessary emotional range expertly.
Other Reviews of the book:
Enter to win an ARC of the book here. (Ends Jan. 8)
Watch the book trailer: