Tuesday, January 8, 2008

One Last Wish: All the Days of Her Life

First of all, I suck at posting. Doesn't matter right now because only my boyfriend reads this, and I highly doubt even that. Anyway, moving on...

For those of you not familiar with Lurlene McDaniel, she writes books about teenagers with terminal illnesses. Fun! Okay, so they're all pretty much depressing, and some of the language used sounds like it could definitely have come from a woman named Lurlene (like continuously calling asses fannies), but they're pretty good nonetheless. She had done many standalone books, and also a collection called One Last Wish, which had the same premise as the other books except the terminally ill teenager was sent an anonymous letter and check for $100, 000 from the One Last Wish Foundation. Sweet! Within this collection of books were another collection about 3 friends; Katie, Chelsea, and Lacey. Each girl has her own book, and there are two books of the three when they are together. The books aren't numbered, but they do have a chronological order, this one being the second to last in the collection, and about Lacey. I didn't feel like doing the books in order because I like Lacey the best, so there.

Okay, first of all, Lacey kicks ass. She's so my ho. Lacey is the typical aloof ice queen in many ways, but she never takes shit from anyone and has some awesome comebacks. Lacey has diabetes, though, and mega issues surrounding accepting that fact. I don't really know how she can ignore the fact that she has to give herself injections everyday, but whatever. She probably just says something nasty to the syringe and goes for it.

So Lacey has been packing on the pounds, which distresses her because she is starting to work on her high school's play and the hottest guy in school, Todd, is the play's star. Lacey has a huge boner for Todd, which I don't understand because he's an enormous asshole (and possibly in the closet), but whatevs. However, Lacey has to compete for Todd's affection with another girl in her high school, a part time model named Monet. I guess that means her pictures must be taken from far away. Monet is a stank ass ho, for real, and a conceited bitch to boot. I kind of love her.

Anyway, Lacey has hidden her diabetes from everyone, and then starts messing around with her insulin doses to lose weight. Smart! Her ex lover, I guess, Jeff also has transferred schools and is now at the University of Miami, conveniently located by Lacey. Jeff is creepy as all hell and basically says really uncomfortable things letting Lacey know he wants to tap that ass. Lurlene tries to play it off as endearing and unrequited love, but he's really a few steps away from registering as a sex offender. He also is a hemophiliac, but has the annoying tendency to refer to himself as a "bleeder" every third sentence. Um, Jeff? Constantly reminding a girl who avoids her own disease that you aren't perfect in the health area is not the way to get into her pants. Just saying, buddy.

Lacey basically tries her best to avoid Jeff, and I can't say I blame her, and hangs out with another girl who is working on the play named Terri. Terri loves chocolate, and context clues refer that it loves her back. She mentions chocolate and food about as often as Jeff calls himself a bleeder. I bet they could have some bloody and delicious conversations. She also thinks Todd sucks and that Monet is a stank ass ho, so she's cool in my book. Lacey doesn't disclose her illness to Terri, who in turn takes her out and proceeds to stuff her face with lobster, steak, and ice cream. Terri rocks.

So Lacey hides in the bathroom during play rehearsals one night and gives herself her lower insulin injection. During this, Monet comes in fresh off a beer and pizza dinner date with Todd, and proceeds to barf up her meal. Lacey confronts her, and Monet tells her to grow up, because I guess concern about bulimia is immature. Monet then spots the syringe in Lacey's hand and accuses her of doing drugs. Lacey is so dumb, she could've put the syringe back in her purse after using it, but noooooo. Lacey lies and tells Monet that she has allergies and takes shots to build up resistance, which I totally wouldn't believe, but Monet buys it and basically tells Lacey that if she's cool she'll keeping the pukefest a secret. Lacey agrees to, which seems unlike her character, because the Lacey I love doesn't do favors for anyone. Oh well.

Lacey introduces puking into her weight loss regimen, and combined with not taking enough insulin, feels sick as all hell. Todd apparently likes his women to look ill, though, and asks her out. He takes her to a college party and basically gets drunk and hits on other girls and ignores her. Real catch there, Lacey. As if it wasn't already the date from hell, Jeff is at the party. After reminding Lacey that he is a bleeder and creepily hitting on her, he gives her a ride home because Todd is way too drunk to drive. He probably slept with some guy after she left, but we'll never know. Todd is way pissed the next day about Lacey leaving with another guy (though he'd feel sorry for her if he met Jeff) and proceeds to dump her, or whatever it's called after you've had one date and don't want to see the other person again. Lacey is disappointed, but plays it off in front of Terri that it's no big deal.

Dress rehearsal time! Lacey is in charge of makeup, specifically Todd's makeup, and he smells her puke breath and asks her if she painted her fingernails recently. I tend to believe that he was just asking because he wanted to borrow her nail polish, but whatevs. Lacey starts feeling gross again, and passes out.

So she wakes up 3 days later and finds out she went into a diabetic coma. Even worse, now everyone at school knows about her illness. Still worse, Terri informs her that Todd is taking puke breath Monet to the prom. Thanks, Terri. Yet the ultimate worst part of her hospital experience is that Jeff comes to visit her, and announces that he's a hemophiliac. Really, Jeff? I had no clue! If only Todd could be as open about his sexuality as Jeff is about being a bleeder. Lacey refuses to tell her doctor, who is also her uncle, how she could have gotten so sick and why her esophagus is irritated, and is rewarded with a few week long vacation in the lovely hospital! Grand!

After psychiatric evaluation and a bajillion tests, she admits screwing around with her insulin dosage and barfing up her dinners. She is eventually let out of the hospital, and now the reader is supposed to ponder over what will become of her relationship with Jeff. I guess we were supposed to feel the chemistry between them and hope for them to get together or something. I, however, did no such pondering, and just wanted that lame ass bleeder to get the hell out. No such luck, they remain friends for now, and will let the future decide on their dating status. Run while you can, Lacey!

Here's the cover of my copy because Amazon only had a picture of the new edition. Please excuse the huge fold across Lacey's face. Anyway, Lacey looks pretty hot to me, and not in the least bit overweight like she feels she is in the book. She looks kind of exasperated, but that's probably because Jeff just told her he's a hemophiliac for the 9000th time. Jeff is exactly how I pictured him: skinny, pale, and creepy. He even has creepy wavy bangs and sideburns. Notice his tight grip on Lacey's shoulder, too.

Coming up soon: Lacey, Katie, and Chelsea meet up again, and Jeff lands in the hospital. Everyone is shocked to learn that it's because he's a hemophiliac. Also, some Baby-sitters Club goodness, with a little Sweet Valley High thrown in. Awesome.


Sophia said...

LOL I totally remember this book and thinking that Lacey was so stupid for thinking Todd was hot shit. I don't remember Jeff being skeevy though. Maybe because I was 11 at that point and I was so into the fact that "he was such a sweet guy." I need to find this book again!

Dude, you totally need to do the ones with the chick that dates the Amish guy. I think they're the "Angels" books or something. Those are totally my favorite Lurlene McDaniel books!

Now I need to dig through my old collection...I'm sure I have a few somewhere.

snappleaddict said...

Yeah, Jeff just made me mildly uncomfortable when I was younger as opposed to now. He just comes on a little too strong for me.

I haven't read the books with the Amish guy, but I know which ones you're talking about. I think I might've read an excerpt of one that was in one of my other books. Either that or I saw a Lifetime movie like it, which is entirely possible.

Robyn said...

I was totally obsessed with these fatal illness books. Although, oddly enough, it really made me hope I'd develop lukemia so I could meet a hot boy at cancer camp, like in "I want to live" or "six months to live". Totally twisted, I know...
Never read these ones though, but gotta hit ebay and try to score a few!

Lauren said...

Although, oddly enough, it really made me hope I'd develop lukemia so I could meet a hot boy at cancer camp, like in "I want to live" or "six months to live".
True story: My then-boyfriend went to be a counselor at cancer camp to fulfill a scholarship community service requirement, and when he came home he told me he'd fallen in love with and hooked up with one of the campers. She left her chemo behind and moved into his dorm room with him, five states away from her doctors. She was kind of a crazy psycho and used to call me at all hours of the night to ask if I missed him. I couldn't even hate the bitch properly because she had cancer, for crying out loud. Anyway.

It is SO NICE to read a recap of a Lurlene McDaniel book that is not an Amazon review and therefore not "oh I looooooooooovvvvveeee Lurlene McDaniel, her books are SOOOO good and SOOOO real and I just cry and cry everytime I read them they're so goooood!" My friends were obsessed with her when we were in middle school. As an English teacher now, I'm not opposed to anything that actually gets kids to read, but sweet Jesus.

Also, I read someplace that she started writing these books after her son was diagnosed with juvenile diabetes. Wouldn't THAT cheer the kid up in a hurry? "My poor baby, you have a chronic illness! I'm going to make you feel better by becoming famous for writing books about sick kids who die."

snappleaddict said...

It's true, it says that her son is a diabetic in the back of most of the books I own, which are the old-school ones.

Fun fact! I went to the library yesterday and on the discard shelf was a Christian romance by Lurlene McDaniel. I thought about getting it, but I'd rather have my romance novels have some rape or at least molestation at the hands of Bruce Patman.

Sophia said...

The Amish guy ones are amazing...it was so romantic back when I was reading them, but now it's like "Wow, despite him being Amish, he still has hormones!" They were like totally meant together but never had sex and just happened to "spend nights in each others' arms." Right.

And the other snarkable one is "I'll Be Seeing You", where this girl with a facial deformity is hot for a blind guy, and is afraid he won't think she's pretty when he actually gets his eyesite back again. Like Lurlene McDaniel was hit or miss...either I bawled during books, or I laughed hysterically at the predicaments.

snappleaddict said...

I read an excerpt of I'll Be Seeing You too! However, I decided it was too ridiculous to read, so you know it's bad, as I own every V.C. Andrews book in existence.

Rita said...

You own every V.C. Andrews book in existence, you say? I would enjoy some recaps of them. I read the ones with Melody and of course Flowers in the Attic (I was kind of disturbed by that one when I was 13).

I didn't read this Lurlene book but I've read a couple others and cried when I was younger. I wish I could find them now and see what I think of them as an adult! Your recap was hilarious :)

And to add to the length of this comment - I just found your blog but already I'm squeeing over it. I have a feeling I'm going to be spending a lot of time in this chair reading your blog when I should be doing school assignments and lesson plans!

snappleaddict said...

I actually was thinking about doing some V.C. books! They are so exquisitely snarkable. And yes, I do own every single one, and multiple copies of many of them. I have this thing about owning first editions of the books, and so whenever I find a first edition at a thrift store or something, I buy it. Currently I have a first edition of every book except for 6, I think.

I spend a lot of time writing this blog instead of doing homework, haha!

marmoonyc said...

Kudos to you for having such a delightfully snarky sense of humor...I'm reading this blog instead of doing an essay about War and Peace, because God knows Lurlene McDaniels precedes Tolstoy in the literary hierarchy!

VC Andrews...definite guilty pleasure. I read the one about some girls at a prestigious theater academy in New York. What was that called? All the main characters had strange names...Cinnamon, Cayenne, Frost...does that sound familiar? God...now it's going to drive me crazy. VC Andrews is ridiculous, of course, but nothing can compare to the amount of saturated angst- per-page ratio in a Lurlene McDaniels book. Sigh...I miss my pre-pubescent years! Keep up the good work :)

snappleaddict said...

That would be the Shooting Stars miniseries, with Cinnamon, Ice, Rose, and Honey. I think half the fun of a V.C. Andrews book is the absolutely ridiculous names.

snappleaddict said...

Oh yeah, and it seems everyone uses this as a procrastination tool to avoid school work...including me. I should make my header say "Tales of a former walking highlighter...making people put homework off since 2008"

ames said...

I just started a whole Lurlene blog, apparently because I'm a masochist.


Also, seriously? I am dying for Petals on the Wind.

Linainverse5 said...

loved that book
lacey was such a drag in that book
jeff does pass the creepy
child molestor stage
loved terri in that book
todd is such an asshole
and monet is a anorexic acting bitch
oh and by the way
in the reach for tomorrow series
jeff doesnt show up until the end
at josh and katie's wedding
and jeff is one of the best men
and lacey shows up alone
so i dont think their relationship lasted