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21 of 23 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Everyone should read this!
I read this book in one sitting whilst waiting for a visa in the Ugandan Embassy: I was so engrossed and had eyes so full of tears that I failed to notice when my ticket number was called, despite the 4 hour wait.

Ways to Live Forever is one of the most honest books I have ever read - it is hard to remember that it is a work of fiction when the characters seem...
Published on 6 Mar 2008 by Ms. Alice J. Swan

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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Good book, just not my style
I enjoyed the diary style of this book is good and entertaining, and it tells a very strong, emotional story, but I just didn't seem to take to it like everyone else did. I think this is down to personal taste, as I prefer more action, romance and adventure than just a diary of somebody. I felt sad and I loved the way this book was so personal. Great read, but just not my...
Published on 20 Aug 2010 by S. Jones


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21 of 23 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Everyone should read this!, 6 Mar 2008
By 
Ms. Alice J. Swan (London, UK) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Ways To Live Forever (Paperback)
I read this book in one sitting whilst waiting for a visa in the Ugandan Embassy: I was so engrossed and had eyes so full of tears that I failed to notice when my ticket number was called, despite the 4 hour wait.

Ways to Live Forever is one of the most honest books I have ever read - it is hard to remember that it is a work of fiction when the characters seem so real. Sam is dying of leukaemia yet somehow his story is neither tragic nor sentimental. As an 11-year-old, Sam is keen to find out as much about death as he can: his list of Questions Nobody Will Answer is testimony to how uncomfortable the subject is for the adults in Sam's life. Yet Sam is practical, and curious about his fate, and determined not to waste any of the time he has left.

This book takes a taboo subject and shines a bright light straight at it: if a death is imminent, then don't try and pretend it won't happen. Ways to Live Forever is funny in a way that will make you repeatedly laugh out loud, uplifting and extraordinarily powerful. Sally Nicholls has a rare talent. I loved this book and would recommend it to anyone.
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17 of 19 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Beautiful, moving ..., 20 Jun 2008
This review is from: Ways To Live Forever (Paperback)
I read this with trepidation, I know the premise of the book and was worried that it was going to be a depressing look at a child's struggle with leukaemia.
I'm a nurse and I have looked after lots of people with this disease and have seen the great outcomes and the sad outcomes too.
This book for me 'humanised' the illness, it made me obviously sad, laugh in places, cry, but it touched my heart so much so, that I've encouraged my friends (and nursing colleagues) to read this as it lends you a deeper perspective of day to day life with a life threatening illness. It's not all pills, drips, injections and medicalisation. It's dreams, relationships and the simple joys that a single day can hold.
The best thing about this book is that it made me hug my three children even tighter than usual, feel immensely grateful for what I have and appreciate the daily struggles that my patients and families deal with.
To make you grateful for a single day is reason enough to read this book, go for it, you will not be disappointed!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Highly recommended, 14 Mar 2008
This review is from: Ways To Live Forever (Paperback)
I enjoyed this book and so did my kids. It is definitely a wholesome, touching and beautiful book and one I can wholeheartedly recommend. I had two problems with it though. First, its reliance on Jacqueline Wilsonesque lists - a bit gimmicky. Second, the narrator's voice which did not come across like any 11 year old boy I have ever met - he was far too lovely!! That said, it is a joy that worthwhile books like this one are still being published.
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16 of 19 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Touching., 8 Jan 2008
This review is from: Ways To Live Forever (Paperback)
This story is the diary/school project of Sam, a boy dying of leukaemia. Once started, I lost two mornings (at work!) reading this. It is suggested reading for young teenagers but I am over 30 and well enjoyed it. I found this book sympathetic (in a boyish kind of way) and surprisingly funny. Really, really good.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars just AMAZING!, 24 Mar 2011
Im a 16 year old teenage boy, i read this book in one night, and OMG this is the best book i have ever read. its so full of feeling, emotions and it really makes you feel like part of the story, i cried at several points during the story, but it was still absolutely amazing, i can recomend this book to anybody who wants a good read, it may not be a long story, but its seriously the best book i have ever read, and i read alot. i cannot give this book anymore stars but if i could i would. Hats off to Sally Nicholls, she's an amazing author :) buy this book and you will NOT be dissapointed
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Dying doesn't need to be depressing, 21 Dec 2009
By 
Jo Bennie (UK) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)   
This review is from: Ways To Live Forever (Paperback)
Sam is dying from leukaemia. But Sam is also a typical 11 year old boy. He loves facts and warhammer, wants to be a teenager, fly in an airship, go into outer space, try smoking and kissing a girl. Sam wants answers to the questions nobody ever asks: what does it feel like to die? does it hurt? Why do people make such a fuss about dying when it's as natural as falling asleep? There is no self pity or fear in Sam, this wonderful book is instead full of the joy of a life lived to the full, a very normal family living with a heart breaking reality of time running out fast, I was in floods of tears at the end.
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Heart-warming, 31 Jan 2008
By 
This review is from: Ways To Live Forever (Paperback)
I was lucky to have read a proof copy of this which was wonderful and very moving in it's own right. Now the book is actually published with the illustrations it all makes more sense. A must read for all ages. A lighthearted and uplifting look into coping with a childs illness from the childs point of view. All emotions covered in one book.

* A word of warning have a tissue or two to hand.
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9 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Simply outstanding, 27 Jan 2008
This review is from: Ways To Live Forever (Paperback)
This is a novel which you might think will be heartbreaking but it's uplifting, insightful, funny and feels absolutely true. Although it's a children's book, I'm sure this would be enjoyed by readers of all ages. Sam's story is profound and moving because it is told very simply; Sally Nicholls genuinely does not hit a single wrong note. I've made a list of people I want to give it to. Buy it now for someone you like!
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars This book will live with you forever!, 14 Sep 2008
This review is from: Ways To Live Forever (Paperback)
I have just finished reading "Ways to Live Forever" by Sally Nicholls and I predict this to be the winner of the Manchester Book Awards 2009.

This novel is written in diary form, something I have never enjoyed before, but this is the diary of eleven-year-old Sam who is dieing of leukaemia. By the second chapter one forgets that it is a diary and no longer notices the dates at the beginning of each subsequent chapter.

The book tells the bittersweet story of Sam's last months. Although it is clear that the inevitable is going to happen, it is hard not to join his family and friends in their hope for a miracle cure. As the story progresses one is drawn in to the family, feeling their pain, hope and helplessness. The fact that it is in diary form gives the reader a sense of security in the knowledge that Sam is writing this so how can it end without him? Perhaps the cure is found. The conclusion to Sam's diary is so subtlety hinted at during the story that when it occurs, although sad, the poignancy of it all evokes a feeling of contentment, as if Sam gets his final wish.

Sally Nicholls writes in such an ingenious way, treating this horrendous illness with dignity and sensitivity that one can almost hear Sam's voice narrating.

I defy anyone, young, old, avid reader or reluctant reader not to be gripped by the emotional roller coaster that is "Ways to Live Forever."
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Wonderful book, 18 Nov 2008
By 
P. H. Lee - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Ways To Live Forever (Paperback)
Quite simply this is a beautifully written and wonderful book, and one of the most moving I have ever read. It deals with complex and profound issues in an accessible and thought provoking way. Highly recommended.
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Ways to Live Forever by Sally Nicholls (Hardcover - Sep 2008)
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