Mercy Lily | Lisa Albert
A poetic, moving story about a teen who must make an unimaginable choiceWhen I picked up MERCY LILY, I really didn’t even know what it was about. I just knew that one of my online friends wrote it, and that it had the most pretty cover ever.
Mom has slowly been losing herself to MS. After traditional treatment fails, she takes bee sting therapy, administered by Lily, to alleviate her pain. Lily is trained as a veterinary assistant, so she can easily handle the treatments. What she can't handle is what happens when the bee sting therapy fails and it becomes clear that Mom wants to die.
One beautiful spring day, Lily's mother asks her for the most impossible thing of all—mercy. They live in Oregon, where the Death with Dignity Act allows a patient to make the decision to end their own life.
While navigating first love, friendship, and the other normal worries faced by high school sophomores, Lily also has to choose: grant Mom's request, or cling to Mom's fading life for all it's worth.
As always, character development is my FAVORITE THING IN THE WORLD, and guess what? MERCY LILY HAS IT! I sympathized with Lily so, so easily. She was written in such a way that Suzie the 67-year-old ex-clown truck driver could relate with her. (Not trying to say that ex-clown truck drivers don’t easily sympathize with teen girls with dying family members… I’m just saying… okay, never mind.) Reading about Lily’s mother deteriorate was like watching my mother deteriorate. I also really liked Lily and her friends’ interactions. You see, she has these ex-friends that aren’t her friends anymore because they became “popular” or whatever and Lily sorta distanced herself from them and also there’s a cute boy that they all like and he likes Lily and it’s all kinda awkward and sad.
MERCY LILY is a quick read, but not a light one at all. The writing is direct and forceful and the last few chapters are punch-you-in-the-gut beautiful.