Being optimistic doesn’t come naturally to Grace Manning, especially not these days. Her family life has just been turned upside down, and things are getting weird with her best friend, Eric. But at least she’s happy at her after-school job at a nursing home, thanks to Mr. Sands, a resident with Lou Gehrig’s disease who keeps up with Grace’s sarcasm, teaches her how to cheat at poker, and even lets her give him a Mohawk.
And then one day, Mr. Sands asks Grace to help him die. Surely he doesn’t mean for her, a 15-year-old smartass, to take him seriously? But he does, and she can’t bring herself to tell anyone. Grace tries everything from praying for a miracle cure to stuffing herself with pancakes, but she knows she can’t run from this decision forever.
Former stand-up comedian Robin Epstein has written a thought-provoking debut young-adult novel, with all the romantic complications and attitude of the movie Juno.