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Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Happy Birthday to Me by Brian Rowe

Seventeen-year-old Cameron Martin has a huge problem: he’s aging a whole year of his life with each passing day!

High school is hard enough; imagine rapidly aging from seventeen to seventy in a matter of weeks, with no logical explanation, and with prom, graduation, and the state championship basketball game all on the horizon. That’s what happens to Cameron, a popular pretty boy who's never had to face a day looking anything but perfect.

All Cameron wants to do is go back to normal, but no one, not even the best doctors, can diagnose his condition. When he finds love with a mysterious young woman, however, he realizes his only hope for survival might be with the one person who started his condition in the first place...

Could you imagine physically turning a year older every passing day while mentally remaining your true age? Terrifying, right? This is what happens to seventeen year old Cameron, a star basketball player in the prime of his high school career. A bit cocky and pompous, Cameron has everything going for him, until he is unexpectedly cursed to turn a year older with every day that passes. Faced with his impending death, Cameron begins realizing what is truly important in life and works on living out his final weeks as a normal teenager.

The concept of this book reminded me a lot of the Robbin Williams movie, Michael, and Cameron's curse is explained by doctors to be a similar syndrome. However, there is a lot of underlying oddities and magic surrounding Cameron's condition which makes this story a crazy ride. Following Cameron as he tries to deduce where things ultimately went wrong and caused this expediated aging process was thrilling. Although a bit predictable at times, the story is very original and sure to entertain! There were quite a few hilarious moments throughout this story, between Cameron's aged self and his peers (including a VERY lonely librarian) that is sure to elicit a smile.

Amongst the humor, there was also a sad undertone to the story which really gave the entire book more dynamic. I loved that there was a serious side to this curse, watching Cameron age was truly depressing and there were several moments that I was actually tearing up. Between trying to live as a normal teenager, missing out on a regular life, and ultimately coming to terms with his death, Cameron doesn't have it easy.

It's always satisfying reading a fresh new story, especially an enjoyable one in a male's point of view. After so many female main characters, Cameron is a great change of pace. The story is a quick read with a lot of beautiful moments that really highlight the truth behind 'living life to the fullest'. I recommend this book to those looking for a fun fast contemporary read with a hint of the paranormal. You won't be disappointed!


  1. I just finished this one this past week (and am thinking of starting the next book in the series tonight...) I enjoyed it! I found it predictable, but in a good way. (If that makes sense?)

  2. Great review! I'm glad to hear you enjoyed it! I haven't read it but I might. I find it a little sad though... poor guy, does he find a way to reverse the aging? Probably not. I'll have to keep it in mind though. Thanks for sharing!