The Ice Queen by Alice Hoffman
I needed something to read yesterday when none of the books I had in progress seemed at all appealing. I grabbed The Ice Queen and decided to give it a try. That I read the entire book yesterday is probably sufficient evidence that it fit the bill.
The novel's narrator is someone who knows all too well that wishes do come true. As an eight-year-old in a fit of pique she wishes she'd never see her mother again; her mother is killed in a car accident that same night. She lives her entire life under the specter of her role in her mother's death. As an adult she distances herself from everyone, becoming an ice queen.
Though she should know better than to make idle wishes she one day without thinking she wished lightning would strike her. Not long after, it happens. While the strike doesn't kill her, it does give her a new lease on life. However it is only after months of physical therapy and depressed wallowing that the protagonist begins slowly to melt her frozen core.
The Ice Queen is concerned with death, fairy tales, the science and inexplicable nature of lightning, and what it means to care for someone. It's a relatively quick read and while the protagonist is not necessarily a sympathetic character as a reader I wanted to find out what would happen to her. The ending wasn't what I expected, but it was satisfying nonetheless.