Thanks for the great review of Side Effects. I scrolled around your site looking for the comparison review, or what it was up against, but I never found that.(I did let her know that the students who chose her book were in the process of writing this up as we speak....or they better be!!!!)
ANYWAY, perhaps your students would like to know that I based Side Effects on my daughter Em's cancer ordeal. I followed her medical stuff exactly but Izzy's personality and reactions were not like my daughters. I used my weepy mother (sort of) for Izzy's mom and Izzy's best friend Kay was a conglom, as are most characters.
My daughter was 141/2 when she was diagnosed, and is now 21, and healthy as can be. Writing Side Effects was a great way to snark back at the people who said and did really stupid things during that nightmarish time, although no one ever really seems to recognize themselves in fiction.
Thank you so much Amy for responding to my email.