Sunday, October 9, 2011

If I Die Young

When Caelyn Noel was diagnosed with asthma five years ago, it put a damper on things. Now, she’s sixteen and things are finally going her way. She has loving parents, the best friend ever, and the boy she has had a crush on since elementary school has finally noticed her. Then, she collapses in school one day. To her horror, she finds out her heart is failing and she must have a heart transplant to live. Caelyn struggles with her fear of dying and worries of having someone else’s heart. 

If I Die Young is approximately 45,300 words.

If I Die Young is recommended for grade 6 and up

This was such a great short read. I read it in about 3 hours. I bought it on Kindle for 2.99. 

*If you are a "crier" I highly suggest you read with a box of tissues.* 

Caelyn Noel is an ordinary teenager. Maybe not as active as some of her friends, due to asthma, but she still has the usual problems. Getting homework turned in, final exams, breaking up with her boyfriend. All of a sudden Caelyn is faced with some heart wrenching issues. She is in the last stage of heart failure and it has been misdiagnosed her whole life as asthma. Her heart is giving out and she is in desperate need of a new one. 
Her parents don't tell her she is going to need a heart transplant and she keeps asking the Doctor what else can you do. Her parents have asked the Doctor not to mention a heart transplant to her and for some reason he agrees. She knows they are hiding something from her, but never guessed it to be this big of a secret. 
She has a best friend Lindsay, and her parents but everyone else seems to disappear. She is lonely. She wants love. She has normal thoughts that I think every teen has even if not faced with heart failure. What if she dies without having found the love of her life? When she meets Austin Walker, she thinks that maybe she does have chance at love. Has she found her true love? 

"If I Die Young" is a must read for any young adult. It is a sweet yet heart wrenching romance and filled with Caelyn's life as she deals with heart disease and facing death. Once I started reading, I couldn't put it down. Caelyn's situation is a bit terrifying, a lot for a young girl to go through, yet she soldiers on. I highly suggest you read it for yourself! 

After reading the Kindle version, I purchased it in paperback so that my kids will have it to enjoy when they are older. 

*Spoiler alert* 

There is one part in the story where she is faced with the decision to be put on a machine that breathes for you. I have to say this part really touched me. I balled. She thought this was the end of her. She said her goodbyes right there. But she didn't want to give up. She kept on trucking, not being able to speak. SHE NEVER GAVE UP! She was so close to death. As a parent I think if I ever have to face situations like this. I don't know how I would even begin to cope. She was strong for her parents.

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