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This is the first book that I have read by Giselle Green.
One of the main characters in the book is Shelley, a fifteen year old girl, who has been suffering from a terminal illness for a number of years. Over the past couple of years her symptoms have become progressively worst and she has recently experienced her best friend's painful and distressing death from the same disease.
Shelley is a typical teenager; she wants to do what teenagers all over the world do, but she is severely restricted by her own physical limits. She feels that she has very little time left to her and she decides that she wants to take charge of her life and probably the most important decision she will ever make, that of when and how she will die.
The other main character is Rachel, Shelley's mum. Rachel obviously loves Shelley more than life itself and will do anything in her power to protect her daughter. Reading about her emotional struggle to accept Shelley's decision was heart rendering. As a mother, you can't help but put yourself in Rachel's place and question what you would do in a similar situation - thank goodness most of us don't find ourselves in that position.
As part of the story we are introduced to Pandora's Box - a box of items and memorabilia from Rachel and her sister's childhood, sent to her by her mother (rather conveniently named Pandora). Shelley decides to read a diary that she finds in the box and through this we discover many things about Rachel's past that force Rachel to face up to some of the secrets she has kept hidden, even from herself.
Right up until the end of the book I honestly had no idea what decision Shelley would actually make and whether she would go through with her plan.
This is a powerful and emotive book that addresses some very difficult ethical issues such as suicide, euthanasia and terminal illness.
I am really glad that I read this book and didn't get put off by the couple of negative reviews.
A book that's hard to put down. A topic that is seldom talked about because of it's intensity of emotion. The author has done such a good job with the story and characters you are "there". When you've read it it stays with you for days so you don't want to red another book for a while. Brilliant.
I was bitten by this book as soon as I started reading it & found it very difficult to put down. It is the first I have read written by Giselle Green & bought it based on it being free & having some good reviews. Will definitely be purchaseing some of her other books.