Sunshine – book review

by Jarrett J. Krosoczka
Graphic Novel
* * * * * Stars (Amazing!)

While in high school Jarrett Krosoczka volunteers at Camp Sunshine, a summer camp for children with life-threatening illnesses. He is assigned to be a one-on-one companion to thirteen-year-old Diego who has brain cancer and uses a wheelchair. It’s an intense assignment for a new volunteer and Jarrett takes his new responsibilities seriously. He also interacts with other teen campers in Diego’s age group as well as other family members (campers attend camp with members of their families). Jarrett forms a strong connection with a family that eats with him in the dining hall – the youngest child is recovering from cancer and is a real spitfire. While you might think that being around kids who have serious illnesses would be depressing, Jarrett finds the opposite to be true – the kids are FULL of life and while they have faced challenges they are eager to find community, friendship, and make connections at camp (just like everyone else). Jarrett keeps in touch with some of the campers after camp is over and shares some of their stories. An inspiring and uplifting memoir, but also tinged with some sadness (because no one gets out of this world alive). For high school teens + adults.

Reviewed by YA Librarian

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