and speaking of death
I just picked up the book “shelf discovery” which basically features summaries of loads of YA books. There’s some Lois Duncan in there, although not my favorite (that would be Gallows Hill) and a surprising number of books I’ve never read. There’s also no Babysitter’s Club, which is just sad. On the other hand, there is “A Ring of Endless Light” which was one of my ultimate favorites. The author also informs us that for L’Engle fans, one is either a Vicky, a Poly, or a Meg. No one, she says, is a Camilla.In that case I’d probably have to be Vicky. Although there’s some Meg in there. But I always did love Camilla….
Anyway. Also not in this anthology: Lurlene McDaniel books. And just the other day I was thinking about them, too.
Lurlene McDaniel, for those of you who are lucky enough to be unfamiliar with the author, are basically this books in which teenagers die. Well, there’s a bit more to it then that, but I think you can sum up her oeuvre thusly:
1. Teenager is diagnosed with some dread disease, most often cancer but also including, off the top of my head, kidney failure, brain aneurysm (that guy just died, I think).
2. Teenager who is dying falls in love with some other teenager.
3. They all learn Big Life Lessons by watching someone their own age die. Also, in one book, the boyfriend gives his girlfriend a kidney.
Then there’s the matter of titles:
- Hold Fast the Dream (1985)
- Why Did She Have to Die? (1986)
- Goodbye Doesn’t Mean Forever (1989)
- Too Young to Die (1989)
- Somewhere Between Life and Death (1990)
- Time to Let Go (1990)
- Now I Lay Me Down to Sleep (1991)
- Time to Die, a (1992)
- Mourning Song (1992)
- Mother, Help Me Live (1992)
- Someone Dies, Someone Lives (1992)
- Sixteen and Dying (1992)
- Let Him Live (1992)
- When Happily Ever After Ends (1992)
- Legacy: Making Wishes Come True, the (1993)
- Please Don’t Die (1993)
- Baby Alicia is Dying (1993)
- She Died Too Young (1994)
- All the Days of Her Life (1994)
- Season for Goodbye, a (1995)
- So Much to Live For (1995)
- Six Months to Live (1995)
- Don’t Die, My Love (1995)
- No Time to Cry (1996)
- Angels Watching Over Me (1996)
- I’ll Be Seeing You (1996)
- Saving Jessica (1996) (KIDNEY BOOK!)
- For Better, For Worse, Forever (1997)
- Till Death Do Us Part (1997)
- Lifted Up by Angels (1997)
- Until Angels Close My Eyes (1998)
- Reach for Tomorrow (1999)
- Angel of Mercy (1999)
- Girl Death Left Behind, the (1999)
- To Live Again (2001)
- Telling Christina Goodbye (2002)
I feel like that should give you a good idea of what exactly this woman is about.
I devoured this books as a kid. DEVOURED. I read them nonstop. I liked the romance. I liked that even though teenagers might die that at least had a chance to learn Big Life Lessons. Read: corny fucking lessons, oh my lord.
The fact that these books have been so incredible popular makes perfect sense to me, because their level of drama is so exactly the level of drama inside your average tweensters head. Death and sex, what else do teenagers want to read about?