Tuesday, April 8, 2014
Review of What's Left of Me by Amanda Maxlyn
Four years ago I became known as the girl with cancer.
I refuse to cry.
And I refuse to give in.
A relationship with a man is the last thing I’m looking for right now, but one night with Parker changes everything. He is persistent, and he knows what he wants. Me.
He doesn’t treat me like I’m fragile.
But he doesn’t know, and I’m not ready to tell him.
What if it changes everything?
Tragedy found me when I was seventeen.
Love found me when I was twenty-one.
My name is Aundrea McCall, and this is my journey.
Review: I finished What's Left of Me last night, but I couldn't write a review for it, yet. I wasn't emotionally ready. This was such an amazing book, and on so many levels. Aundrea has had cancer for the past four years, and she has been in and out of chemo and radiation, so she is scarred mentally, emotionally and physically from her fight. She has recently moved to a different city to live with her sister because she is able to do a new, more aggressive treatment for her cancer. It is there that she meets Parker. The amazing Parker.
If you have read any of the New Adult books out there right now, then you have read about the dance club hook-up, possible one night stand, insta-lust turned into love combination. Don't get me wrong, New Adult books are definitely one of my vices. I love some angst and people making one bad decision after the other, only to be completely surprised when said bad decision doesn't turn out well for them. This was just such a different twist, though. Aundrea meets Parker at a dance club, but, for her, trying a one night stand, random hook-up with the hottest, most amazing guy she has ever seen is just another step in her survival process. She has spent years fighting physically, yet hiding away mentally and emotionally. This is her beginning to fight on those terms, which is great, since this aggressive treatment round makes it tough for her to fight physically.
The only problem with those pesky one night stands is that they can sometimes come back around to haunt you - which is what happens. It turns out that Aundrea has a connection to Parker that she did not count on. She begins to see more of him, and Parker slowly wins her over and convinces her to give him a shot. Aundrea does not let him know that she has cancer. She wants him to see her for her and not for "that girl, with cancer". I actually totally get that. Don't get me wrong - in real life, I'm an advocate for honesty, and I don't think that much good comes out of being dishonest. But, I really do get her wanting time to just be a young girl flirting and dating a hot guy. I do think that, based on what I have seen of cancer patients, it does seem like she was able to hide things, physically, longer than she would have been able to. Yet, I constantly tell my husband that he is not the most observant person, so perhaps I need to rack that up to Parker being a not so observant male?
All of that aside, Aundrea was such an amazing character. I was laughing on minute and crying the next at how difficult and cruel her life was. This book is about how life is just not fair, sometimes. She and Parker were such a cute couple, and he was so patient with her. Every time she got scared, he was there to talk her into just being with him. Aundrea's story still has some bumps to get through, and the Epilogue of the book nearly killed me. In fact, I don't like how it ends - it just makes me want more. I think that's why I couldn't write a review right away - I was like "come on!!". So, I stalked Amanda today and found out that there is a conclusion that will be coming out. I don't want to see Aundrea suffer more, but I want to see how Parker handles Aundrea. Oh my gosh, I could read and re-read Parker's response to finding out Aundrea's secret. Life is never about the good speech in the moment, though. It's about how you deal with what you find out. I can't wait to read the next one!