Publishers Weekly - Publisher's WeeklyChildren face-to-face with severe body damage and potential death just when they have begun to live are Krementz's focus in her latest book of profiles, illustrated with her black-and-white photographs. The 14 children, ranging in age from seven to 16, are working hard, with their families and doctors, to achieve triumphs large and small over what has befallen them. Some have cancer, kidney, respiratory or heart ailments. Others have been in accidents and are burned or paralyzed. Krementz has succeeded admirably in getting the kids to ``tell it like it is.'' Elizabeth is hurt by her father's lack of knowledge about her cancer treatment; she comfortably poses for the camera bald. For many in the book, the future is uncertain. But these children try to go to school, keep and make friends, be as normal as possible while valuing each day with a maturity beyond their years. Marycely,sp is OK who has lupus, even competes in the Miss Hispanic contest. The stories, not easy, are like the children: stunningly honest and often sad, yet filled with hope and triumph. Ages 11-up. (Oct.)
Library Journal - Library JournalThis powerful new addition to Krementz's ``How It Feels . . .'' photography series (e.g., How It Feels To Be Adopted, How It Feels When Parents Divorce) offers first-hand accounts by children and young adults who have faced, or are still facing, serious illnesses and disabilities: heart disease, spina bifida, leukemia, rheumatoid arthritis, asthma, aplastic anemia, lupus, skin grafts, osteogenic sarcoma, gunshot wounds, epilepsy, cystic fibrosis, kidney disease, and diabetes. While older children and young adults will benefit from learning about their peers' experiences, adult readers will also be profoundly moved and inspired by the courage, determination, gallantry, and grace with which these young people live their very difficult lives. Highly recommended.-- Marcia G. Fuchs, Guilford Free Lib., Ct.
School Library Journal - School Library JournalGr 6 Up-- This powerful, hopeful, and upbeat account introduces readers to 12 young people, ages 7-16, all of whom are facing life-threatening illnesses. Medical problems with which the subjects struggle are asthma, cancer, congenital heart defects, cystic fibrosis, diabetes, epilepsy, juvenile rheumatoid arthritis, kidney failure, lupus, severe burns, spina bifida, and spinal cord injuries. Each of the brief chapters is illustrated with black-and-white photos which show the subjects in ``normal'' activities and in medical treatment situations. Readers learn about quiet heroism; and about the endurance of suffering, pain, and uncertainty for patients and their families. Implicit or explicit are the psychological and the economic costs. Krementz focuses not on illnesses but on people. They ask no pity and make no apology for their limitations. They laugh as well as cry. One 16 year old with epilepsy admits to being a ``complete bitch'' on occasion. Krementz' collection of interviews is both instructive and inspirational. She states that these youngsters ``manage their daily burdens with gallantry and grace. This book is a celebration of their courage of and their lives.'' So it is. --Libby K. White, Schenectady County Public Library, NY
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