Today I have a review of the upcoming August 7 release, The Bucket List, by Georgia Clark. Definitely do not judge a book by its cover with this one, friends! Those cute little cupcakes do not represent the full breadth and depth of this novel, as adorable as they are.
Lacey Whitman is only twenty-five when she discovers she inherited the BRCA1 gene mutation, a gene strongly predictive of breast cancer. Like anyone who discovers she has the gene, there are two choices: increased medical monitoring beginning asap, or having a preventive double mastectomy. Lacey is adamant she does not want to choose the latter, but the former is not much more appealing. She has led a sheltered life prior to moving to New York and feels she will lose her sexuality along with the mastectomy. Her friends come together to help her create a bucket list of things to experience prior to having a possible surgery. There are many laugh-out loud moments balanced along with the serious tone of the burdensome decisions Lacey faces.
Thus, Lacey begins a year of marking things off her very much sensual, sometimes racy bucket list. I will leave the rest to your imagination, or better yet, if you read the book, you can follow along on her adventure.
There is a twist to this. Lacey is learning to accept herself, including her body, and as she stares down the path of her future, she has to choose if she will be empowered, or if she will be a victim- both before and after the surgery.
The Bucket List is a smart, often times witty, escapade. At the heart of this book is female empowerment, especially when it comes to our bodies. We need more books like this. Sometimes we read about main characters who are insecure. While that is where Lacey starts, and it lets those of us who feel insecure also feel validated, we, too, need models of women working past that.
I appreciate that Georgia Clark wrote this story, her research into the possible mental and physical health changes associated with inheriting the BRCA1 gene, including interviewing women affected, and I applaud her choices in the coming of age of Lacey. The Bucket List has emotion and tenderness with some humor for levity in what can be an earth-shattering, fear-inducing place. While this is not every woman’s story who finds herself carrying the BRCA1 gene, and I don’t think it is meant to be, it is one woman’s journey towards self-acceptance, and a heartwarming one at that.
Thank you to Atria/Emily Bestler Books for the complimentary copy. All opinions are my own.
From the author of the critically acclaimed “lively and engrossing parable for women of all generations” (Harper’s Bazaar) The Regulars comes a deeply funny and thoughtful tale of a young woman who, after discovering she has the breast cancer gene, embarks on an unforgettable bucket list adventure.
Twenty-five-old Lacey Whitman is blindsided when she’s diagnosed with the BCRA1 gene mutation: the “breast cancer” gene. Her high hereditary risk forces a decision: increased surveillance or the more radical step of a preventative double mastectomy. Lacey doesn’t want to lose her breasts. For one, she’s juggling two career paths; her work with the prestigious New York trend forecaster Hoffman House, and her role on the founding team of a sustainable fashion app with friend/mentor, Vivian Chang. Secondly, small-town Lacey’s not so in touch with her sexuality: she doesn’t want to sacrifice her breasts before she’s had the chance to give them their hey-day. To help her make her choice, she (and her friends) creates a “boob bucket list”: everything she wants do with and for her boobs before a possible surgery.
This kicks off a year of sensual exploration and sexual entertainment for the quick-witted Lacey Whitman. Ultimately, this is a story about Lacey’s relationship to her body and her future. Both are things she thought she could control through hard work and sacrifice. Both are things she will change by choosing to have a major surgery that could save her life, and will give her the future she really wants.
Featuring the pitch-perfect “compulsively delicious” (Redbook) prose of The Regulars, The Bucket List is perfect for fans of Amy Poeppel and Sophie Kinsella.
Have you read any books by Georgia Clark, or any great summer reads? Happy Reading! ~ Jennifer THR