Side Effects May Vary

Side Effects May Vary

3.44 (9,347 ratings by Goodreads)
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The first book from Julie Murphy, the #1 New York Times bestselling author of Dumplin'-which is soon to be a major motion picture starring Danielle Macdonald and Jennifer Aniston.

For fans of John Green and Rainbow Rowell comes this powerful novel about a girl with cancer who creates a take-no-prisoners bucket list that sets off a war at school-only to discover she's gone into remission.

When sixteen-year-old Alice is diagnosed with leukemia, she vows to spend her final months righting wrongs. So she convinces her best friend, Harvey, to help her with a crazy bucket list that's as much about revenge as it is about hope.

But just when Alice's scores are settled, she goes into remission, and now she must face the consequences of all she's said and done.

Contemporary realistic fiction readers who love romantic stories featuring strong heroines will find much to savor in this standout debut.
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Product details

  • 12-17
  • Paperback | 352 pages
  • 136 x 204 x 44mm | 260g
  • HarperCollins Publishers Inc
  • Balzer and Bray
  • New York, United States
  • English
  • Reprint
  • 0062245376
  • 9780062245373
  • 37,031

Review quote

"Honest and unflinching, this is a compelling story of one teen's struggle with cancer, love, and living. A worthwhile addition." -- School Library Journal "Readers will turn the last page wanting to know where the next chapter leads." -- Kirkus Reviews "Alice and Harvey's relationship is raw, honest, moving, and unapologetic in its depiction of their individual, and collective, pain." -- Booklist "Julie Murphy weaves together a tender and funny tale of love, friendship, heartache, and redemption. SIDE EFFECTS MAY VARY explodes with brutal honesty, brilliant wit, and unflinching heart." -- John Corey Whaley, winner of the Michael L. Printz Award for WHERE THINGS COME BACK "Julie Murphy's SIDE EFFECTS MAY VARY is a funny, heartfelt, honest look at the beauty and the risk of getting a second chance. An inspiring novel about all the things worth living for. I adored this debut!" -- Siobhan Vivian, author of The List "A funny and touching novel about a strong-willed heroine who finds facing death simple, but facing life heart-wrenchingly complicated. A real original." -- Jennifer Echols, author of GOING TOO FAR "A tale of unlikely romance, impossible obstacles, and mortality, this book is a must-read." -- Teen Vogue "It's equal parts fun, cringe-worthy, and totally fearless!" -- Seventeen Magazine "An unexpected twist on the typical cancer story." -- Voice of Youth Advocates (VOYA)
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Back cover copy

When sixteen-year-old Alice is diagnosed with leukemia, her prognosis is grim. To maximize the time she does have, she vows to spend her final months righting wrongs--however she sees fit. She convinces her friend Harvey, who she knows has always had feelings for her, to help her with a crazy bucket list that's as much about revenge (humiliating her ex-boyfriend and getting back at her archnemesis) as it is about hope (doing something unexpectedly kind for a stranger and reliving some childhood memories). But just when Alice's scores are settled, she goes into remission.

Now Alice is forced to face the consequences of all that she's said and done, as well as her true feelings for Harvey. But has she done irreparable damage to the people around her--and to the one person who matters most?
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About Julie Murphy

Julie Murphy lives in North Texas with her husband who loves her, her dog who adores her, and her cats who tolerate her. After several wonderful years in the library world, Julie now writes full-time. When she's not writing or reliving her reference desk glory days, she can be found watching made-for-TV movies, hunting for the perfect slice of cheese pizza, and planning her next great travel adventure. She is the author of Dumplin', Side Effects May Vary, and Ramona Blue. You can visit Julie at
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Rating details

9,347 ratings
3.44 out of 5 stars
5 18% (1,670)
4 31% (2,909)
3 34% (3,152)
2 13% (1,186)
1 5% (430)
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