Publisher: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
Release Date: 2012-01
Genres: Death & Dying, Emotions & Feelings, Love & Romance, Social Issues, Young Adult
Austin Parker is on a journey to bring truth, beauty, and meaning to his life.Austin Parker is never going to see his eighteenth birthday. At the rate he’s going, he probably won’t even see the end of the year. The doctors say his chances of surviving are slim to none even with treatment, so he’s decided it’s time to let go.But before he goes, Austin wants to mend the broken fences in his life. So with the help of his best friend, Kaylee, Austin visits every person in his life who touched him in a special way. He journeys to places he’s loved and those he’s never seen. And what starts as a way to say goodbye turns into a personal journey that brings love, acceptance, and meaning to Austin’s life.
Confession, I thought this was a 2013 debut. Someone still thinks it’s 2012. Oh yes, me. Anyway, before I start talking about myself in third person even more, I’ll get on with it.
Austin has cancer. I don’t know why they just didn’t say it, the synopsisand plot dart around it until almost the very end. What if I was unable to use context clues and common sense? He could have been dying from AIDS for all we know. So. Austin has cancer. He is tired of doing chemotherapy so he decides he wants to die surrounded by his friends and family.
Life is subjective as far as memories are concerned. I mean, what pieces of your own life do you really remember? Some good times, some bad times definitely, but mostly you remember those times that really stand out, those times that define who you are as an individual. Now’s the time my life flashes before me—flickering recollections, vacations, holidays, friendships, the moments that made a difference.
This is a book you pick up pretty much with the goal to be emotionally torn apart. You know it’s going to make you cry, despite how you may have held it together during Marley and Me. (But I doubt you did.)
“What if I just want to die?”
“Then I will be sad and disappointed that you cheated yourself out of your chance at existence. Not all of us have that opportunity, you know, to choose life.”