Samantha and Juliana, Sam and Jules - everyone knows that when you see one, the other can't be far behind. Best friends for more than half their lives, the two are practically inseparable. And in the summer before their last year of high school, Sam and Julie are certain that whatever the future brings - college or professional dance careers or both - they'll be ready for it, sharing the triumphs and facing the tears together.
But nothing could have prepared them for Julie's sudden illness and the discovery of its cause - diffuse histiocytic lymphoma, a type of cancer. Sam tries to be a true friend, supporting Julie during the weeks of testing and doctors and treatments, but the horrifying pain and indignities that Julie suffers, and the feeling that she has lost control over her own life, force Julie to a place where even Sam cannot follow. Now both Julie and Sam must learn to accept the unacceptable - that Julie's cancer may not go away. How each, in her own way, comes to face the possibility of Julie's death, and learns to celebrate her life, makes for a searingly honest, unforgettable novel.
Davida Wills Hurwin is the author of A Time for Dancing (an ALA Best Book for Young Adults) and The Farther You Run. She teaches theater at Crossroads School for Arts and Sciences and still loves to dance. She lives in Southern California with her husband and daughter.