Hi, I'm Mrs. F-B!

Tuesday, November 03, 2009

Drums, Girls and Dangerous Pie - Jordan Sonnenblick

It's not often that a book makes me cry and cry and also laugh out loud on the same page, but Jordan Sonnenblick did it in this awesome book, Drums, Girls and Dangerous Pie. Admittedly, it's one of the weirder names for a book I've ever read, but I thought it was terrific.

I actually had this book on my list to read for about two years, but you know how my list gets - if I were to start reading today and read without sleeping, eating, or going to the bathroom for the next three years, I probably couldn't finish my TBR stack. So anyway, I never got around to it. But then I read Zen and the Art of Faking It for the Battle of the Books, and I enjoyed it so much, I decided to move this one up on my list. That was a good idea, because I'd been missing out. Drums, Girls and Dangerous Pie is a powerful story about a boy whose baby brother gets leukemia. Not a funny thing, right? And it's not. But on the other hand, there's a lot of life, even when you or your little brother have cancer, that's pretty funny. And laughing about things is good for your blood pressure. I think it gets those little endorphin things that make our brains feel good move around or something. So we need to laugh, especially when things are hard. I really believe that, and apparently so does Jordan Sonnenblick.

Steven is in 8th grade, so you know there's a lot going on in his life already that's kind of tumultuous; adding his little brother's leukemia to the mix makes a lot of things much harder, and Steven sometimes has trouble dealing. So do his parents. so now you've got a 13 year old boy who's stressed and not very well able to cope without the people he relies on most to help him through because they can barely cope themselves. It's kind of a recipe for disaster. And there are definitely some disasters along the way. But there are a lot of good things that come out of it, too. I think this is an important thing to remember, although often hard to do, when someone gets really, really sick. Yes, it's cruddy and icky, and horrible to go through, but there are bound to be some bright spots along the way, and holding tight to those will help a lot.

I do some charity photography work with the Children's Cancer Association, and so I'm always looking for books that I think would be helpful for kids with cancer and/or their families to recommend to them. This one's going on that list.

Next up is Notes from a Midnight Driver. Jordan Sonnenblick told me (he's my Facebook friend!) it's his mom's favorite, so I can't wait to figure out why. He'd better get going on a new middle grade novel pretty soon, though, because after that, I'm out of novels by him, and I'm not going to be too happy about it!

No comments: