Saturday, September 29, 2012

Double Standard

In this day and age there's definitely a double standard when it comes to what religions it's acceptable to mock or poke fun at, and other religions where if you do the same thing you're considered narrow-minded or intolerant. This really bothers me and it's not right. I admit, it kind of ruffles my feathers when different religions are mocked and made fun of. I don't care if the mockers are of a different religion or of no religion at all; it's not kind, even if they think what they're saying is funny.

A few days ago I read an article that expressed my thoughts in a much more concise, eloquent way than I'm capable of putting it. The article was called Muslims, Mormons and Liberals, and it talked about the Broadway play The Book of Mormon that's all the rage right now. I haven't seen it and I definitely don't recommend it since I know how derogatory/vulgar it is. The basic gist of the article asks the question why is it okay to mock the Mormon church, while at the same time making the point that if this play were as derogatory towards the Muslim religion, for example, people would be up in arms (and rightfully so, since it's not right to ridicule ANY religion.

There are many different religions in the world and I'm glad that I live in a country where we have the freedom to be whatever religion we choose. I just wish everyone followed the "golden rule!" The LDS church released this diplomatic statement in regards to the play, "The production may attempt to entertain audiences for an evening, but the Book of Mormon as a volume of scripture will change people's lives forever by bringing them closer to Christ."

*If you would like to know more about the real Book of Mormon or the Mormon religion in general, click here or here.

Friday, September 28, 2012

FAQs: Home Health Services

I recently received this question: 
  • It doesn't seem from what I have read on your blog like you have nursing help, yet many disabled people qualify for a certain amount of free help from the state, right? It just seems like it must be a lot of work for your family, although I'm sure they don't mind.
So I thought I would make a post about my what sort of help I qualify for from the state, who cares for me and how we get by. 

Because of the magnitude of my disability, I qualify to have a paid care attendant six hours a day, seven days a week. (Each state is different, but the maximum amount of hours you can qualify for in the state of Missouri is six hours a day, seven days a week.) Other people who are disabled, but maybe not as severely might qualify to have a paid care attendant for two or three hours a day; it really just depends on how much assistance that person needs. Each person undergoes an initial evaluation to assess how much assistance they need, and then they are awarded a certain amount of hours per day. *As I said, each state is different. Some states award far more the amount of hours that I qualify for, or even pay for 24-hour care. But here in Missouri, six hours per day is the maximum amount of hours people can qualify for, no matter the severity of their disability. I'm not sure the rhyme or reason to it all, I just know that it differs on a state-by-state basis.

I think it's unfortunate that the maximum number of hours my state awards is only six per day, especially for someone like me who needs care 24/7 since I physically can't do anything for myself. I AM quite self-sufficient and don't need someone sitting by my side every second of the day (like when I'm working on my computer) but I still can't ever be left alone and always need someone within earshot so that I can call them when I do need help. Six hours a day only covers 25% of the time, but I guess I won't complain and just be grateful for the six hours that I DO qualify for!

One fortunate thing is that I'm able to hire my own care attendants, and they can be friends or even my own family members. If I like you and feel comfortable with you, and if you pass a background check and are willing to do the work, then that's really all there is to it! Being able to "hire" my own attendants is what enables my mom to be able to stay at home with me since she earns enough money to where she feels like she doesn't need to work outside of the home to make ends meet.

Don't let me fool you, what the state is willing to pay personal care attendants each hour isn't much money at all (the starting pay is $7.50 an hour and after three months you get a "raise" to $8 an hour, and after a year your pay tops out at $8.50). That's shameful, if you ask me, and the state really should be willing to pay care attendants much more ESPECIALLY considering the fact that I have the option of being in a nursing home. That would be FAR more expensive than paying someone $8.50 an hour, six hours a day, seven days a week. It doesn't seem quite fair, but like I said earlier in the post, I'm just grateful for everything I do qualify for. Although I wish there was more assistance available, we're able to get by which I'm truly grateful for because I don't know how we would do it if we had to pay for private duty nursing care and personal care attendants out of our own pockets.

When I started writing this post I asked my mom if she likes caring for me, or if she wishes that we had a staff of nurses and caregivers to be in charge of my care so that she had the freedom of doing her own thing whenever she wanted. She said that although it would be nice to have a little more help (especially in the case of if she gets sick or if she wants to take a trip to visit her parents or some of my other sisters), but for the most part everything is how we want it. Mom said that she loves caring for me and that she feels fortunate that she gets to spend her days with her best friend (a.k.a. me!). She also said that no one else would do as good of a job caring for me as she does, which I have to admit is very true! :) She knows my care far better than any licensed nurse or "professional" caregiver.

My mom said that her ideal situation would be to have all of her daughters live near us so that they could help shoulder the burden of my care. Unfortunately, most of my sisters live hundreds of miles away (my older sisters live in Texas, Mississippi, California and New York) so having them help is out of the question. It's too bad they don't live closer because it would be really nice if they could each help one day a week. The Lord obviously has a different plan for my mom and me, though, and that's okay because we're making it work one day at a time! 

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Two Good Hands

What I wouldn't give to have two good hands! Sometimes I wonder what my life would be like if I'd just broken my back in my car accident instead of my neck, making me a paraplegic instead of a quadriplegic. It still would've been a complete life-changer to go from being able-bodied to being completely disabled and forever wheelchair-ridden, but I just can't help but wonder what my life would be like if I had the use of my arms and hands. I'd be able to live a completely independent life and that would be pretty amazing.
A few months ago a new reality-type show called Push Girls debuted on the Sundance channel and it follows the lives of four woman in wheelchairs. Three of these women are paraplegics and one of them is a high-functioning quadriplegic (she doesn't have full dexterity of her fingers, meaning she can't straighten them out, but she does have full use of her arms). It's amazing to watch these women because they're so independent! They drive their own sporty, little cars, they live on their own and are able to care for themselves. Watching this show has made me wonder what my life would be like if only my legs were paralyzed and I were able to live on my own and be independent. What would my social life be like? Would I be married? What sort of job would I have?
Oh, what I wouldn't give to have the use of my arms/hands! If I could pick one thing to be able to do for myself again, it would probably be doing my own hair and makeup! Don't get me wrong, my sister Chandra does a phenomenal job on doing my hair and makeup for me but if I were able to do that for by myself again that would be amazing! Chandra is engaged and will be moving away after she gets married next June. I CANNOT  tell you how much I'm dreading that! I will miss her for tons of reasons, of course, but I'm wondering what will become of me, appearance-wise?!! I've already resigned myself to the fact that I just won't look as nice when she's not here to doll me up anymore. Sad, but true.

There are other things people have to do for me that would be nice to do for myself again, too. Things I'm pretty particular about, like feeding myself or brushing my teeth. My younger sister Chandra has brushed my teeth just about every day since my accident and she's by far the best at doing it because she knows just the way I like it. (Just thinking of anyone other than my mom or Chandra brushing my teeth is absolutely horrifying! I'm sure I could train someone new and eventually have them learn how I like it done, but you have no  idea how difficult this sort of instructing/training is. It's much easier said than done!)

And to be able to do something as simple as to scratch my own itches, or move the hairs that get in the way and tickle my face! Talk about pure torture! It's more difficult than you'd think to not only direct someone in the right direction of where to scratch, but how to scratch. I don't allow just anyone to help me with things like scratching itches, either, unless that someone really knows me well and is familiar with my care. I would rather suffer with an irritating itch instead of going through the frustration of trying to explain the scratching process.

Two good hands come in so useful and make all the difference! You can have my legs if I can have my hands!

Monday, September 24, 2012

New Calling

Three weeks ago when I was at church the bishop of my congregation (similar to a pastor) told me that he wanted to talk to me. That's always cause to be a little bit nervous wondering what sort of calling (or responsibility) he might ask you to be in charge of. I met with him later that day and he extended me the calling of being the Sunday School teacher to the 12 and 13-year-old youth. My bishop said that he feels like I have a lot to offer but am often underutilized. I tend to agree with that because I know that I AM very capable, but that my physical situation does cause me to be overlooked at times.

I'm of course nervous at the prospect of this new responsibility, but I'm excited, too. Teaching isn't what makes me nervous, it's more the fact that I have difficulty speaking loudly/fluidly, so that fills me with anxiety as I worry about the kids not being able to hear me well enough. I know I'll be nervous for the first few weeks as I settle in and as the kids get used to me, but with the Lord's help I know I'll be successful.

My first lesson is next Sunday and the topic is sexual purity. That's not a daunting subject, is it?! My mom taught this same age group about 20 years ago and her  first lesson was ironically the one on sexual purity, too! One positive thing I have going for me is that I have the mentor of all mentors living with me! My mom has served as a teacher in our church to various youth/teenage classes for more than 30 years. She's an amazing teacher and is so knowledgeable, so I'm glad that I will be able to bounce ideas off of her and take advantage of her experience/expertise. Wish me luck!

"The Unlikely Disciple"

My mom and I recently finished reading a great book called "The Unlikely Disciple: A Sinner's Semester at the World's Holiest University" by Kevin Roose. I recently heard about this book when one of my friends put it on his Facebook page. I looked it up online, read the synopsis of the book and thought it sounded like a very interesting read. Here's a synopsis of the book:

The Unlikely Disciple is the story of the semester I spent at Liberty University, the Reverend Jerry Falwell’s “Bible Boot Camp” for young evangelicals. Liberty, which is located in Lynchburg, Virginia, is the world’s largest evangelical Christian university – a 10,000-student training ground for the next generation of America’s Religious Right.

I grew up in the ultimate secular/liberal family (my parents are Quakers who used to work for Ralph Nader), and I went to Brown University – a school that, by Falwellian standards, is only a notch or two above Sodom and Gomorrah. But during my sophomore year at Brown, I decided to enroll at Liberty as a transfer student, hoping to learn about my Christian peers by living among them for a semester. The Unlikely Disciple chronicles the fascinating, entertaining, thought-provoking experiences I had during my semester at Liberty. Such as:
  • Singing in the choir at Rev. Falwell’s legendary Thomas Road Baptist Church
  • Struggling to keep up in my impossibly hard Bible courses
  • Getting to know the guys in my dorm, whose personalities ranged from clean-cut pastors’ kids to foul-mouthed rebels
  • Going on a spring break mission trip to Daytona Beach, where fifteen Liberty students and I tried (and failed) to convert drunken co-eds
  • Experimenting with prayer
  • Attending a meeting of “Every Man's Battle,” Liberty’s on-campus support group for chronic masturbators
  • Going on dates with Liberty girls
  • Interviewing Rev. Falwell for Liberty’s campus newspaper (which, in a twist of fate, ended up being the last print interview of his life)
  • Learning some valuable lessons about the value of tolerance, the complexities of faith, and the future of America’s culture wars
It was great having my mom read this book to me because we enjoyed discussing it together along the way. It was great how the author was able to completely immerse himself in evangelical life at Liberty University, especially since this sort of lifestyle was completely foreign to him. This book was extremely well-written, especially for it being written by someone so young. My mom and I laughed all the way through the book and appreciated how witty and clever the writing was. I give this book two thumbs up and recommend it as a fascinating read.

Saturday, September 22, 2012

"A Tree Grows in Brooklyn"

A few days ago I finished reading a great book which I thought was blog worthy: A Tree Grows in Brooklyn by Betty Smith. Although I was familiar with the title of this book, I didn't know anything about it prior to reading it, but I decided to give it a go since I've heard the book mentioned many times over the years.
A Tree Grows in Brooklyn was first published in 1943 and tells the story of Francie Nolan, an 11-year-old girl growing up in Brooklyn at the beginning of the 20th century. I know I'll never cut it as a book reviewer because I lack the vocabulary/finesse that it takes to give books a fair review, especially a book as wonderful as this one. A Tree Grows in Brooklyn is one of those complex, well-written books that would be great for a high school or college English class to read because it has such well-developed characters and lots of themes that you could write interesting papers on.

I'll just say that I loved this book and definitely recommend it for people who like good literature. This book has stood the test of time as it's been around nearly 70 years. It's on lots of different "best books" lists and it's definitely worth your time!

*(FYI, I do want to say that this book did have some language that I didn't care for in some parts of the book (i.e., the Lord's name being taken in vain). I think that the use of this sort of language was culturally appropriate for the circumstances and era of the book, so it didn't bother me quite as much as it would've otherwise, but I just wanted to make note that.)

Friday, September 14, 2012

Hummer Wars

I love hummingbirds. I have a hummingbird feeder on my window and it's so fun to watch them as they stop for a drink. But boy are they vicious, especially for such tiny, delicate birds! They are very territorial and don't like to share… at all! When there's competition at the feeder between two or three birds they get downright mean and dive bomb the other bird(s) at the feeder and don't let the other ones get close. It's so fun to watch them and I'm glad my feeder gets so much activity!

Pinkers and Blackers

When I was a little girl my family wasn't exactly well off. My dad had a decent enough job, but there were a lot of kids in my family (I was the fifth of seven kids) and my mom was a stay-at-home mom, so our family was living on a single income. Needless to say, there wasn't a lot of extra money to go around for frills or luxuries.

When I was about three years old I only had one pair of shoes, and it was a pair of tennis shoes. That's what I wore when I went out in public, including church. Even though I was really young, I remember feeling embarrassed that I had to wear tennis shoes to church. I wanted pretty dress shoes like the other little girls had.

One day when I was about four years old my mom and I were out at a local shoe store called Kenny's and she found a steal. Not one, but TWO pairs of dress shoes. (You know the kind of   shoe that a lot of little girls wear that are shiny, faux patent leather-looking shoes with a strap that goes across the top of the foot?) One of the pairs was black and the other was pink and they were my size and only two dollars apiece! I treasured those shoes that I affectionately dubbed my "pinkers and blackers." My mom said that it was the best four dollars she ever spent because those shoes made me so happy. It's the small things in life that make it so grand!

Thursday, September 13, 2012

FAQs: Potpourri

If you're a Jeopardy!  watcher then you've probably seen them have a category from time to time called "potpourri" which means "a little of this and a little that." Today's FAQ post is answering a bunch of questions that I've recently gotten from my readers, so I thought I'd lump them all together in one post.

When you eat, do you tell your helper what you want a bite of, or do they choose?

I definitely tell whoever's feeding me what I want to eat, when I want a drink, etc. The thought of my feeder just using their discretion to choose for me makes me shudder! I have such little control in my life, and eating is such a pleasurable thing (when done the right way). I can't imagine letting someone else decide what I eat/when I eat it. For me, that would be pretty degrating and it would take a lot of the enjoyment out of eating.

Have you considered getting one of those little assist monkeys (like a seeing-eye dog) that can help you out?

I've seen those assist monkeys on TV and I'm actually not quite sure how much assistance they could provide to someone in my position since I really can't move at all, and although monkeys are smart they aren't intelligent enough to be able to help me with my computer, etc.

This question makes me laugh because as cute as those monkeys are, I don't think I would enjoy having one. First of all, anyone who knows me knows that I'm not a pet person. I like animals and think they're cute, but only from a distance. I don't think I'd enjoy owning a pet (but maybe that's because we didn't have very many pets growing up, so I never had a pet that I developed a love/bond with).

And don't even get me started on pet hair, either (which I detest)! I've always found it so gross to go into a house of a pet owner and to sit on furniture that's covered in pet hair, or where you know a pet lives there because of the smell. Or where the person has cats that jump up on table/countertops. Or where the person's dog tries to jump on you, lick your face or sniff your crotch. I know this isn't the case with every pet owner and pet, but I just don't like them!

I was wondering if your sense of modesty has changed over time as you've had to get used to having other people help you with such private things? Has it gotten any easier, or are there things that still bother you?

When I was first injured it was very difficult for me to have people bathe me or see me naked (I'm sure most people can relate to this) and I always asked my mom to leave the room, which was just fine with her because it was uncomfortable for her, too. It didn't seem right to have her around for such an intimate/personal thing. After I left the ICU and went to rehab I quickly changed my thinking and always wanted my mom around when it was time to do my bath because she was the only one who knew me and she was my advocate/ally. I felt like she was really the only person that I could rely on.

Since that time things have definitely gotten easier, and it doesn't really phase me at all to have my caregivers help with my care any more. However, when someone new starts helping with my care (especially if it's someone I personally know) I do feel a bit awkward at as they learn the ropes. But once they learn the way things work it really isn't a big deal.

When I'm in the hospital and have to have surgery or have doctors and nurses care for me it doesn't really bother me to have people see me naked anymore like it did at first. I'm used to it and I know that the hospital staff is used to dealing with medical procedures and seeing naked patients all the time since that's what they do on a daily basis.

Why are you so susceptible to kidney stones as a paralyzed person? 

Since I'm not able to stand up and move around like normal people, urine tends to pool in my kidneys and it doesn't filter through them like it does in your average person. SO, that tends to lead to the formation of kidney stones, and in my case the stones that form in my body are infectious stones which are especially dangerous to me. This is why kidney stones are so detrimental to my health.

Saturday, September 8, 2012

The RNC and the DNC

I've really enjoyed watching the Republican and Democratic National Conventions over the past two weeks. I don't know all that much about politics and I don't really understand how everything works, but that being said, I DO try to be at least somewhat well-informed so that I can have a basic knowledge/understanding of the issues.

I have a love/hate relationship with politics (when it comes down to it, probably more hate than love) because I get so disgusted with it all! It really bothers me when one political party tries to paint the candidate from the other party as evil, scum of the earth who doesn't have the best interest of the citizens of our country at heart. 
Regarding President Obama and presidential candidate Mitt Romney, I don't think either of them are evil, and I think that they are basically trying to do what they think is best for the country. The fact is, they just don't agree on what the best thing for our country is.

I think it's interesting when the political parties have several potential candidates that they are trying to narrow down and how they all attack/criticize each other. But then when a candidate is decided upon they all rally around/promote that person. They go from criticizing and attacking them to endorsing them and singing their praises! I know that's how it works in politics, but I think it's funny. Like in 2008 when Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton were both vying to be the Democratic nominee. They both portrayed the other in a really bad light, but then after Obama was elected president he made Hillary his Secretary of State. If he really disagreed with her policies that much, then why would he want to appoint her to his cabinet?!

I can't stand when political candidates personally attack each other. I'm much more inclined to vote for a candidate that just says where they stand on the issues and why they think they're the best candidate for the job instead of making personal attacks against the other. There's also so much in politics that gets taken out of context, so it's hard to know what to believe.

I know that everyone is entitled to their opinion, but sometimes I get so sick of seeing people's political status updates on Facebook! I saw this so me e-card recently that made me laugh. Sometimes I don't mind people's political posts because I find it interesting to hear   their thoughts on different issues. Other people are completely over the top with their extreme opinions and incessant political posts!
Did everyone see Clint Eastwood's speech?! What a train wreck! I heard that the "empty chair" thing was a relatively last-minute/impromptu thing. I wish he would've decided against it because in my humble opinion it just made him look so ridiculous/foolish!

Something else that really bothers me when it comes to politics is when celebrities endorse a political candidate. It's quite clear where most of Hollywood stands when it comes to this election, since the majority of the celebrities out there are liberal and support Barack Obama. I wish celebrity endorsements weren't allowed on either side because I don't like celebrities using their status to trying influence others.

I do think that the state of our country is in turmoil right now and that things need to change. I voted for Barack Obama four years ago and I have to say that I haven't been entirely impressed with the job he's done as president. He did inherit one heck of a problem as far as the economy goes, but I don't feel like he's really done enough to change things. I'm not 100% sold on who I'm going to vote for yet, but I think our country definitely needs to go in a different direction than it is.

Wouldn't it be great if we could "all get along" (politically speaking) for the good of the country?! I know that people have different views/opinions on things, but I really think both sides have some good ideas (and some bad ideas, too!). If Republicans and Democrats could collaborate and combine their good ideas I think good things could happen for our country.

So who will win the election? I honestly don't think Mitt Romney stands a chance against Barack Obama (that's just what my gut is telling me) but I guess time will tell!

Thursday, September 6, 2012

FAQs: Bath Routine

I recently wrote a blog post about how my hair gets washed, and this post is about my bathing routine. When I was first injured it was a surreal time for me as I realized all of the things that I would never  do again. One of these things was showering. I remember thinking, "Will I really never stand in the shower to wash my own hair/body again?!" It was such a normal thing that I'd done for myself almost every day of my life from the time I was a young girl.

I know that some paralyzed/disabled people have roll-in showers and shower chairs that they sit in (a chair that's made to get wet) in order to take care of their bathing/showering needs, but I don't. I'm sure we could've had some additional renovations made to our house since the downstairs bathroom is close to my bedroom, but I wasn't really interested in going the whole roll-in shower route. Bed baths might not be the most "high-tech" option out there, but my mom and I decided that that's what wanted to do for us and our situation.

We do a bath every afternoon. It really doesn't take too long; probably about 20 minutes from start to finish (including getting me back to bed, undressed and situated after we're finished). Depending on what day of the week it is, we either do my bowel program and a bath, or we just do a bath and then do some range of motion exercises. (Range of motion is exercises or stretches that help keep the muscles in my limbs flexible since I'm not able to move my body parts/muscles like able-bodied people do.)

Any other questions regarding the ins/outs of the life of a quadriplegic? If so, just leave a comment and ask your question, or send me an e-mail!


In literature, foreshadowing is a literary device in which an author indistinctly suggests certain plot developments that will come later in the story. Here are some examples of foreshadowing in my life:

I was in my first semester of nursing school when my car accident happened in 2003. So many of the things I was learning in school and a lot of the experiences I was having would soon become so prevalent in my life, but in a different way than I could've ever expected. First of all, I thought that would be the nurse, not the patient! But as I've learned, life often has a way of throwing monkey wrenches in our neat, well-made plans.

In school we would have some sort of lab on Fridays to learn some sort of practical skill. One of the first labs we did was all about how to do a proper bed bath, and we even had to break up into pairs, get into the hospital beds in the lab room and bathe our partners and then let them bathe us. (We were basically in swimming suits, but it gave us an idea of what to expect.)

Here's another example of foreshadowing. In July of 2003 I asked Steve, a family friend and nurse who worked in the ICU of Barnes Jewish Hospital to give me a tour of the hospital since I would be starting nursing school in a few short weeks. Steve showed me all around the hospital, including the ICU. (Who would've known that four short months later the ICU at Barnes would become my home for seven of the most trying/life-changing weeks of my life?!) When I was in the ICU after my accident a few times I recognized people's faces and I could not for the life of me figure out how I knew their faces. My short-term memory was sort of fuzzy after my accident, but a few months later I remembered the hospital/ICU tour with Steve and I was able to put two and two together and make the connection.

A month or two before my accident I decided to look for a job at a hospital working as a nurse's aide. I dearly loved my job at the movie theater where I'd worked for the previous 3½ years, but decided to get a job where I could get some experience in the nursing field. I'd gotten the job, but hadn't started yet. (I was planning on quitting my job at the theater at the end of December.)

Nothing like a little foreshadowing to give life more interest and depth, right?!

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

At Long Last…

I've been a fan of Live with Regis and Kelly since I was first injured and suddenly had tons of time on my hands to watch TV, and I still tune in to Live every morning while I get dressed. Nine months ago Regis Philbin announced that he was leaving the show after hosting it for 25 years. For the past nine months they've been searching for a new co-host for Kelly and I've wondered who they would pick to fill the empty co-host seat.

A few months ago I heard rumors that the co-host search had been narrowed down to three finalists (Josh Groban, Seth Meyers and Michael Strahan). The three of them had co-hosted with Kelly many times, and I liked all of them really well because all three of them are super funny and have a great chemistry with Kelly.

Yesterday, at long last, Kelly's new co-host was announced, and it's Michael Strahan (former NFL New York Giants player). He was actually my top choice of the three, so I totally approve. Live with Kelly and Michael will continue to be one of the highlights of my mornings. :)

Tuesday, September 4, 2012


Last week I was searching iTunes for a new audio book to listen to and I came across Legend by Marie Lu. The description sounded good, so I decided to give it a go. I really liked, so I thought I'd give it a shout out on my blog to help "spread the word" to anyone who may be looking for something new to read. This book was published last November, but I hadn't heard of it until last week. I think it's even in the early stages of being made into a movie.
Here's a short synopsis of the book: "What was once the western United States is now home to the Republic, a nation perpetually at war with its neighbors. Born into an elite family in one of the Republic's wealthiest districts, fifteen-year-old June is a prodigy being groomed for success in the Republic's highest military circles. Born into the slums, fifteen-year-old Day is the country's most wanted criminal. But his motives may not be as malicious as they seem.

"From very different worlds, June and Day have no reason to cross paths--until the day June's brother, Metias, is murdered and Day becomes the prime suspect. Caught in the ultimate game of cat and mouse, Day is in a race for his family's survival, while June seeks to avenge Metias's death. But in a shocking turn of events, the two uncover the truth of what has really brought them together, and the sinister lengths their country will go to keep its secrets."

The dystopian society/post-apocalyptic feel to this book is very similar to The Hunger Games and Divergent, so if you enjoyed those books, you'll most likely enjoy Legend. Be aware that this is the first book in a series and it ends in a cliffhanger. (The next book, Prodigy, will be released on January 29, 2013.) If you're the kind of person that has to have closure at the end of a book, I'd wait until all of the books are out before starting this series. :)
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