All These Lives
by Sarah Wylie
Published by: Farrar, Straus, and Giroux
Released on: June 5th, 2012
*Please note, this review was based from an ARC*
The basis of this novel is what interested me. The thought of a set of twins, one having cancer and battling through the treatments of chemo and radiation, and the other willing to do anything if it would mean that her sister would live. I did find that, but it wasn't anything close to what I was expecting.
In the beginning, Dani let's us know that her parents do everything they can to still make her feel special and loved despite the constant attention that her sister Jena gets due to her cancer. And she does have a great set of parents, doing great with everything that they must deal with. She also let's us know that Jena's cancer doesn't effect her. She is still the same Dani that she was before Jena was diagnosed. Jena is the only one who has changed. Dani only wishes that she was the same, and since Dani was little, her mother has always told her that she was just like her. They had nine lives. Jena didn't have this rare gift. Therefore, Dani purposely sets out to waste away her lives in hopes to help save Jena's. What she couldn't see was that her acts of 'death' were only making Jena weaker by worrying about her sister and if she would live through them. I couldn't help but find the nine lives thing a bit far fetched.
Then we fell into the issue of Dani at school. She acted out, smarted off, and wasn't friendly to anyone. She then wondered why the few people that she did allow into her life didn't much care for her. It was clearly obvious that she was struggling with issues because of her sister, yet she clearly admitted to not being bothered by it.
Towards the end, I loved the bonding that Dani and Jena were able to do before Jena got sick again, but the ending fell flat, leaving far too many questions in the open.
Received for review purposes from the publisher.