- Traumatising content
My heart was shattered that day. It was on that day that I realized that life had an end, and that mine was coming. It was on that day that I realized that I was going to die. Leukemia, they told me. It's almost over.
I didn't know what to do after that. I thought that maybe it would be best to die right then, get it over with. I thought that I could push myself away from all my friends, all my family, stop them from missing me after I was gone. I thought that I could handle it on my own, that perhaps the world was better off without me.
I was wrong.
So please help me, I'm dying. Save me, I'm falling. They tell me I won't survive. Please catch me, because if you don't, I'll shatter. I can't grab on anymore, I can't keep fighting. It's going to swallow me up.
My name is Alyssa Gray, and by the time you finish reading this, I'll be dead.
A few warnings and things to note:
-I've put up the tramatising content tag due to a lot of mentions on death, dying, illness, and a mother who tends to be rather cruel. I know that I take a perspective that many will strongly disagree with, and I'm okay with that. Just be warned that this isn't lighthearted stuff. This is real, and death is real, and this part streaches beyond the fiction into reality.
-I'm going to say a minor spoiler, but I don't want it to take you unaware because it is something to be aware of.
At one point, my MC attempts suicide and fails. It's a very violent scene and I will put up the gore tag after writing this, and it's also just really depressing. If this will be triggering, you need to be aware of this before you read it.
-This is a christian book. It may go against some of your beliefs. I hope that you can read and comment anyway even if some of it does not sit well with you.
Credits for the cover go to the user 'Media in Sanity'. Your help and assitance has meant so much to me, God bless you in your writing and your endevours.
A proud member of WriTE. I've promised to finish this fiction and update it at least once a month. My schedule is very irregular, and I'm working on that, but I'm going to do everything I can to make sure that this book stays out there. I'm not ending it until it's done.
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I usually prefer to read fantasy, but I do enjoy works of fiction based on real life, especially emotive ones. Some names that come to mind include Bridge of Terabitha, Jeffrey Archer's works etc and today, a new name joins that list: Terminal.
As a student currently majoring in Psychology, from the start till the latest chapter, there are quite a number of psychological issues and principles introduced so succinctly with good flow throughout this story.
They include crippling depression in Chapters 1 & 2, as well as uninvolved parenting in Chapters 5 & 6.
Even though I've only just started learning Psychology, from this story, I believe that Ms Austin has done well in recognising that psychology is a discipline which perspectives are all highly interconnected, effectively demonstrating this knowledge throughout her story.
For instance, the main character Alyssa, experiences crippling depression after receiving major news that she suffers from terminal leukemia, which is only made worse by her mother's apathy towards her. In psychology, psychological disorders are often exacerbated/more likely to arise in individuals with poor social networks.
Another good example would be Alyssa's negative reaction towards her best friend Marya as well as Joshua (which I presume would be her love interest hehe). Even though patients suffering from depression really require and desire strong social connections to alleviate their social pain, they often behave in counterproductive ways that put people off rather than gaining their affection.
Enough of the boring technicalities. Even if you ain't interested in psychology, the emotional appeal of this story should be sufficient to keep you going, as Ms Austin does a good job of plunging the main character into a seemingly bleak and inescapable hell, and as the kind Samaritans we all are, we would love to see how she escapes the darkness and embrace the light once more, albeit with several meaningful struggles.
To give a more balanced review, the only area which I can fault this story on is perhaps grammar. There are occassional slips, such as "principle" (when it should be "principal"), but such errors are minor and extremely few. To Ms Austin, I recommend going back to your earlier chapters once in a while to review and edit your work, especially when there are constructive comments which you agree with.
All in all, an excellent piece of work and I wish you all the best in getting this story up on the road!
This story is one for the ages. You feel what the character feels and you get really upset and sad when the main character, Alyssa, does. This is an absolutely wonderful story!
The stroy hit's as hard as a hammer dropped from a rooftop. It's not your normal RRL fare, so be prepared for something tackling a serious issue head on.
This is a story that makes you sad, very sad. and maybe a bit angry too. It's one of those where your empathy glands are threatening to burst on you.
A must read for those who need some feels in their life.
(This is a review as of Chapter 8) If you're interested in reading Terminal and haven't already, grab your teddy bear. You'll need it.
The side characters are my major gripe with this story. By Chapter 8 we've really only seen four characters. Alyssa, the protagonist, is handled very well, which is good because we see the whole story through her eyes. I feel we get a good look at what she's going through and that's good. Dare I say, looking at her experience is the point of the story and that is done very well.
However, the other characters seem to bleed together a lot. They all seem to talk in the same voice using the same words. It isn't bad...but it's bland. I get snippets of their character as seen through Alyssa's eyes but the moment they're in the scene and open their mouths they lose their individuality. My advice would be to give some of them some vocal quirks (Marya, for instance, could use some slang befitting a teenager).
The grammar here doesn't make many errors. Of course, there are some comma splices and the like but I'm not an English teacher. The average reader won't care about those finer nuances of grammar so I won't consider them. The one thing that it does do wrong is in the dialogue. As a pretty hard rule, when a new person starts talking you should start a new paragraph. Don't worry about how short that makes the paragraph; it's better to preserve clarity.
The style itself is clean and doesn't bog down the story. I guess, the best thing I could say about the style is that it doesn't get in the way, which is really the goal for a story like this. I will say, some repeated words and phrases (i.e. a lot of doors seem to open with a bang). The one thing that pulled broke my immersion was you have a scene when we first see the mom in person and Alyssa says "me" when she should say "my" two or three times in a row. Good job on the texting scene, the italics helped and the actual format of the scene made it very clear.
Ah! I've saved the best for last. Let me start by saying how refreshing this story is on this site. Most works I see here are fantasy utilizing LitRPG elements or are "another world" stories. And there's nothing wrong with them but Terminal is a breath of fresh air. The scope of the work is laid out before us from the very start and that's a comforting feeling. I know that Terminal can't last forever and that makes me invest a little more in each chapter. This story keeps strong realism and hammers home the right points. There's a bit of fumbling with the introduction of what I presume to be the love story, but that's tolerable. I look forward to seeing how this story progresses.
(Chapter 7 here) The novel achieves its goal. You, the reader, are collateral damage.
Fast-paced, organized and with an excellent separation between dialogue and description that bring life and tempo to every scene.
It surely isn't an issue. You'll rarely notice typos. I've not found a single mistake that confused me about the meaning of a sentence.
It's 'John Green' meets 'Douchebag Land'. The sheer amount of sticks in the mud (Marya's mother counts as four) makes me wonder if the ghost of tragedy that haunts the main characters is not really a blessing.
They're pretty good! Alyssa's negativity seems hurtful to the novel at the beginning, which led me to just recoil away from the novel and assert that she needs Jesus. Yet it's all explained around mid-Chapter 2. I won't give spoilers, so all that I can say is that you won't judge her anymore.
Underrated gem that makes me red of anger for not being at least 10 times more popular than it is. I shall put a link of this novel in the next update of my work to help promote it.
Great work, God_is_Good!
As of Chapter 14.
It’s refreshing to find both an actual tragedy and a romance that’s not also trying to be a comedy. Further, it’s even more unusual to find one so well constructed, and from such a young author. The grammar is easily within the top 10% of the site, with the occasional word substitutions being only mildly jarring. As others have noted, the work drives hard towards both sorrow and despair. For the most part it succeeds in this task, but there are concerns for those of us who struggle with the willful suspension of disbelief.
First, it is quite evident that many scenes are overly simplified—either from the author’s own lack of experience, or for literary convenience (more often the later). There is a clear teenage target audience, and I think the fiction excels within that expectation. This leaves, however, some characters within one dimensional “foil” roles, and their behavior can be unbelievable to the point of pulling a reader out of the story.
It should also be noted that the story is becoming more reliant on Christian themes and is likely to contain multiple conversion narratives by the conclusion. I applaud the attempt at a difficult subject, and, as a Christian, I don’t find these sections objectionable. They did come off as a little heavy handed, however, and didn’t ring true to how discussions of faith pan out in the real world. My hope would be that non-Christian readers would be able to read through these sections in pursuit of the deeper narrative, not drop the work out of hand.
My only other concern is a desire to bring the story to a “happy” ending when it has the makings of a solid tragedy. I believe it will be much more interesting for the other characters to sacrifice themselves for the main character, but that ultimately such sacrifice is fruitless and causes them material harm (if not religious and/or psychological gain). For now, I will continue to follow the work in hopes of a clear resolution.
How would you react if you were told you were about to die? What people would you let into your life in your last days? Would you have it in you to fight back or would you be lost in an endless sea of despair? These are all hard questions that many people would rather not have to look into if they were able to, but these are precisely the questions that this story forces you to confront.
You'll find yourself plunged into the first-person viewpoint of a young woman named Alyssa as she must confront the most terrifying monster of all; her own mortality. This isn't the typical kind of story on RRL and it's very refreshing to see an emotionally powerful literary fiction on this site. This is a work of love by the author and it shows through in her ability to put you right in the viewpoint of Alyssa as we explore her reactions to her diagnosis.
Each chapter feels like a crystalized memory that the protagonist of this story has collected from her final days. The prose the author uses is fluid as it washes over you with emotions and punchy in that it hits the heartstrings from the start. We are first introduced to Alyssa in the throes of grief and shock. Shortly after this, we are introduced to two central characters, Marya and Joshua. These two characters are night-and-day, and easily are metaphors for the different aspects of Alyssa's mindset as she deals with her own reactions. Marya feels like the social aspect who puts on a strong face, while Joshua is the inner nature that cries out for support and belonging. Alyssa's mother easily rounds out the cast as the personification of obligation to, and judgment from, members of our family in times of loss. This story shows just how alone a person can be, even if they are surrounded by people, when the unthinkable finally arrives on their doorstep.
This isn't a story to shy away from, it's the story that we all are thrust into in one form or another in our lives. This is a tale that will have you crying while huddled in blankets, clenching your fists with frustration, and wanting to call your family in the middle of the night to see if they're okay. This is a remarkable story told by a brave author who has something profound to say to us all. The author doesn't hold anything back as she shows us all the stages of grief and loss a person can endure. Despite being a tragic tale, you'll find yourself flipping through the chapters in a night, feeling right along with the protagonist. You'll find yourself caring deeply about Alyssa and the characters around her, hoping beyond hope for a light at the end of the tunnel.
I can only attest to the first dozen chapters of this story so far, but even that is enough to get a reader hooked for more. I will be eagerly awaiting future chapters and look forward to the ongoing emotional rollercoaster ride that the author has in store for us. In case you were wondering if you should give this story a shot... You should, without any hesitation. Dim down the lights, turn on some soothing music, grab your favorite stuffed animal (and lots of tissues), you'll be in for a great read.
Keep up the great work God_is_Good!
Hey, I read the whole thing.
The story is well followed and i can firmly imagine what everything looks like in reality.
To be honest, it all felt so real that it sounds like a real story!
It was well written as well, the text made me go deeper into every chapter and it made me want to read even more! I'm rating it 4 and a half overall, only because the story doesn't look really suitable for this website. Even though there are thousands of different people and it's good that these kinds of stories can be found even here.
I'll be expecting new chapters, i hope you write them fast! Patience is not something i'm keen of!
This is my review up until chapter 5.
To be honest, in my lfe, I have seen and experienced myself leukaemia patients handling their lifes and their struggles with their loved one. So, I'll based on that bias when giving you the review. Some of these people were my friends and people whom I known for quite some time.
TLDR: go to the bottom, alright :)
I like your style. Proper pacing with good details in between. It's juicy with enough spices sprinkled around.
Reading your synopsis, I might take this as one person POV, which is the MC herself. Honestly, I think the MC was just being too drama queen. The silent-type mind you. If as if she wanted people to read her mind all the time and she was not willing to do the same to others. There was no benchmark of her actions. Spend a day or two with leukaemia patients and you will see what I mean. If she wanted to lash out, let her lash out. If she wanted to seclude herself, she will seclude herself from everyone. Not going to school would be a good indicator.
I don't mind if you elaborate more on certain things; for example about her memories of other people. Alyssa is 18 years old and had a previous life before she was diagnosed with leukaemia, right? So, it would be good for us to actually correlate what was happening to her now versus her previous version. So we can compare. And that comparion would make Alyssa's story more compelling.
I knew people change 180 degrees when their life when given a turn for the worse, but Alyssa needed to do more than just being the depressed and taciturn self. Was she bubbly? Cheerful? Helpful to the point service above self? Or loving daughter? A dependable friend? Nothing was told except that she did not act like before. Like how before?
By the way, no doctor will allow test to be taken on children below a certain age without their guardian's consent. Taking a bone marrow test involved high-risk and extremly delicate surgery. It's not like a needle being inserted into your veins for your blood to be taken. This procedure can be extremly painful even with sedative.
I don't know how the law at your place govern this, but a doctor will always hold their Hippocratic Oath and not 'death-sentencing' a teenager. Not directly to her, but to her parent's first and foremost. And of course there will be supporters group to counsel her and such.
You have excellent grammar. Don't mind the usual tenses mistakes as everyone who writes had them. As long as it doesn't break the flow or give another meaning altogether, you are good to go. Keep it up!
Honestly, I can't correlate that much with the MC. I cannot feel her suffering, her despair, her trauma and her fear. What was she most afraid of losing? All I'd read was "I'm this and I'm that because of that."
Not that I don't have a heart, but she screamed to me as if to say "Look, I'm going to die. So, what do YOU want to do about it?" Unless love is what she severely lack from others. But from what I had read, she had lots of love, especially from her friends. Her mum... nothing much was said about her.
For example, in chapter 5, all I can related that the MC was interested in to see how her mum acts to her having leukaemia. She's more interested in how people react when they know she is dying instead of sharing her grief and helping each other out. Same too as her friends.
Perhaps this line could help you understand: "The pain of suffering is not just for those who suffers, but for those who watch you suffers too."
All in all, I want to feel all the characters and their emotions. No just random angst. Leukaemia is real and death is real. The pain is real and the fear of loss is real. Make it the center of your work because that's how your title imply, right. Not just Alyssa, but also of her people around her.
And the other supporting characters lack voice of their own. I mean they sound, acted, behave, thought and see from the same point of view. They had no distinct characters of their own.
Overall score: 4/5
Something new to read compared to the usual stories I've read in here. You are brave to tackle an issue that most people would not find familliar and treated it as some tears-jerker. It is not just tear-jerkers. It's thought provoking, heart-warming, soul-searching kind of piece that if you can pulled it off, I can reassure you, that you will have a fan favourite.
I've just finished ten chapters and wow. The greatest strength of this author is their ability to create vivid pictures out of words. Descriptive sentences allow you to be in the setting like you're actually there. I can still remember what Alyssa's living room looks like, while I can't recall what I had for lunch yesterday.
The grammar story is impeccable.
The dialogue makes sense. There's nothing that's said that makes me wonder where it came from. I like that the lense of the story is through the main character's thoughts, because a lot of what she goes through remains unsaid.
The main character is dealing with a lot, and her reactions are not always the best, as one would expect from an 18 year old dealing with heavy issues. There's something very relatable in that.
So far, there have been no chapters that felt like filler to me or that I thought should be cut. That is super promising and makes me want to savor the chapters as I read them.
That being said, it's an incredibly sad story for most of those chapters so far. Holy crap, is it sad. The thing is though, this story is making me feel a specific emotion and that says a lot. I can't remember the last story that effected me emotionally.
Overall, two thumbs up. I am very interested in seeing where this goes and will be bookmarking the hell out of this.
Also if you want to enhance the emotion while you read, and probably break down and cry, listen to this while you go through chapters.