This novel claims to explore the mother-daughter bond, the question of predestined date of death and if a person has the power to change fate. Unfortunately, it fell short for me on all levels. Jaffe never fully develops the characters and most certainly does not develop to any degree any lesser characters at all. We never learn anything of the other family members or anything substantial about Flora and Muriel’s relationship prior to the months before Flora’s supposed “expiration date”. It reads more like someone brainstorming a novel with sentences that never go anywhere. Jaffe also tended to head into activism territory in a few chapters, commenting on the death penalty in one whole chapter, or making comments here and there disparaging the veterans of the Viet Nam war. I am not opposed to including political points of view in an otherwise unpolitical novel if it serves the story line, however, I didn't feel that was the case here. The end of the novel, which while I would say did not come soon enough for me, still seemed too abrubt and I was confused as to what actually happened. There was so much potential for a great novel here- I loved the idea, it just didn’t give me enough of the story.