Synopses & Reviews
"If she dies, I'll die," are the words 15-year-old Mia Perlman writes in her journal the night her mother is diagnosed with cancer.
Nine days later, Mia's mother is dead, and Mia, her older sister, and her father must find a way to live on in the face of sudden, unfathomable loss. But even in grief, there is the chance for new beginnings in this poignant, funny, and hopeful novel.
"Anyone who has grieved the loss of a loved one will feel an immediate connection to Mia, the narrator of this intimate novel. Mia is a freshman at the Bronx High School of Science when her mother dies 12 days after being diagnosed with cancer. During the next several months, life falls back into a routine, but everything that Mia experiences meeting new people, watching her father fall in love again, and discovering the difference between infatuation and love is accompanied by a sense of longing. Haunted by memories of her mother, Mia is feeling particularly vulnerable when tragedy strikes a second time, as her father suffers a heart attack. His subsequent bypass surgery goes well; nonetheless, Mia remains painfully aware of the consequences of mortality. Not until she befriends a cancer survivor does she begin to trust in life again. Despite its title, this novel does not offer a 'cure' for Mia's heartbreak. Rather, it gives readers a keenly insightful study of grief. Rabb balances sorrow with humor, and sprinkles quotes by renowned writers on the subjects of love and loss as additional food for thought. The author, who like Mia lost her mother as a young adult, writes with authority and precision. Ages 14-up." Publishers Weekly (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)
"With almost unbearable poignancy, Mia talks about how to grow up, survive loss and family history, and heal her heart....Readers will cherish this powerful debut." Booklist (Starred Review)
"Black humor, pitch-perfect detail, and compelling characters make this a terrific read, despite the pain that permeates every superbly written page." School Library Journal
"[F]ull of sadness, humor, and quirky details that ring completely true. I thoroughly enjoyed it." Curtis Sittenfeld, author of Prep
"Cures for Heartbreak is a sad, funny, smart, endlessly poignant novel....It made me feel grateful for my life, for my family, and above all for the world that brings us gifts like the gift of Margo Rabb." Michael Chabon, author of The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier & Clay
"Mia's voice is authentic, and her story of family tragedy and healing rings true. Touching and tender." Kirkus Reviews
"Rabb's highly autobiographical debut is a well written study of the effects of unimaginable loss on a bright, normal, likable teenager." Children's Literature
"Teens looking for a tearjerker, a romance, or an unexpected comedy will find much to enjoy here." VOYA
"The characters are fully formed and when the last page turns, four new and fascinating people have been born into the reader's consciousness." KLIATT
After her mother's death from cancer, 15-year-old Mia Perlman, her older sister, and her father must find a way to live on in the face of sudden, unfathomable loss. But even in grief, there is the chance for new beginnings in this poignant, funny, and hopeful novel.
About the Author
Margo Rabb grew up in Queens, New York, and now lives in Brooklyn. Her stories have been broadcast on National Public Radio, and have been published in the Atlantic Monthly, Zoetrope, Seventeen, Best New American Voices, New England Review, and elsewhere.