Lurlene McDaniel

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Name: Lurlene McDaniel
Also Known As:
Occupation: Author
Medium: Print novels
Works: Listed below
Official Website(s):
Fan Website(s):
On Fanlore: Related pages

Lurlene McDaniel is a Young Adult author who has been writing since the 80s. She specializes in stories about children and teenagers suffering from cancer and other life-altering conditions. She is most known for her One Last Wish series, which is a continuity in and of itself.

McDaniel started writing about illness and life-changing conditions as a way of coping with her son developing diabetes at the age of three.

Selected bibliography

  • Don't Die, My Love
  • Prey
  • Breathless
  • Hit and Run
  • Windemere series:
    • The Year of Chasing Dreams
    • The Year of Luminous Love
    • Losing Gabriel: A Love Story
    • Somebody's Baby
  • One Last Wish series:
    • A Time to Die
    • Let Him Live
    • Mourning Song
    • Sixteen and Dying
    • Someone Dies, Someone Lives
    • Mother, Help Me Live
    • The Legacy: Making Wishes Come True
    • Please Don't Die
    • She Died Too Young
    • All The Days of Her Life
    • A Season For Goodbye
    • Reach For Tomorrow
  • Angels Trilogy:
    • Angels Watching Over Me
    • Lifted Up by Angels
    • Until Angels Close My Eyes


McDaniel's works have a decent-sized fanbase, mainly adult women who grew up reading her stories as young girls or teenagers. While some of her fans still have a genuine love for her books or at least a nostalgic soft spot, though, others grew up to find the storytelling and the characters laughable and eyeroll-worthy. Several reviewers have taken to snarking the books, albeit in a loving manner most of the time. However, some reviewers are critical of the narrative's attitude towards certain types of people: the overweight, the wealthy, working mothers, and anyone who indulges in premarital sex or goes beyond the box of traditional nuclear family values.

A few bloggers who review the books have admitted to being generally fascinated with death, illness, and medical storylines. McDaniel's books spared no detail in describing the symptoms, the specifics of treatment, and the overall suffering and deterioration of the patients' health. One particular book even printed fictional transcriptions of a patient's diagnosis and death report.

In addition, many of the books included love stories, usually of the tragic variety, in which a devoted love interest stood by the side of the patient throughout their suffering and recovery. The patient often bemoaned their poor appearance due to sickness taking its toll, but the love interest didn't care and refused to leave them even in the final hours. Fans who remember and view the series more fondly are enamored of such devoted romances.


The majority of fanfiction is for the Angels Trilogy series, focusing on the romance between Leah Hall-Lewis and Ethan Longacre. The plots are varied takes on the "meeting again after the series' end" angle, sometimes reuniting the lovers for good or dealing with the cultural wall between them that makes a lifelong romance impossible. Other stories focus on the POV characters from the book reflecting on their losses, or the surviving family after the death of a main character.

The section is also home to many stories set in the Lurleneverse, but using original characters.


Fan Works