June 14, 2006

Coming of Age In So Many Ways

Going for the Record is a tough novel to read, in some ways, but I was really glad to read it. The author, Julie A. Swanson writes a generously loving yet realistic novel about the horrors of watching someone you love die of cancer. Since in the past three years I've lost two aunts to cancer, and in the year before two friends, this was a great book for me to read. I've never read a YA novel that talks about things in such detail, and it made me wonder if Swanson hadn't suffered a similar up-close loss.

Soccer plays a big part in Leah Weiczynkowski's life, and her father is proud of her, when, as a senior, she is standing on the edge of her dream - to play in the World Cup and the Olympics. Too bad the timing is so poor, though; as her dream begins, his nightmare begins as well. Pancreatic cancer: painful, invasive, and quick. Leah has to put aside her love for her game in order to love her father. But what must she do to love herself too?

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