Thursday, July 10, 2014

What's Your Manifesto?

I just finished Francisco X. Stork's The Last Summer of the Death Warriors. I had previously read Marcelo in the Real World, and so I knew he was a trusted author.

This book is a story of an odd couple: Pancho is a strong, Mexican-American youth whose father and sister have recently died, and is bent on avenging his sister's untimely death. Daniel has a strong mind but weak body, as he is diagnosed with cancer and is not expected to live much longer.

They both meet at St. Anthony's, an orphanage for teenage boys. From the beginning, Daniel says that he was expecting Pancho's arrival so that he could also become a "Death Warrior." I know the idea of death warriors seems kind of childish, but I like where Daniel took the big idea. Death Warriors have a few priorities in life, and one of them is to live life to the fullest by cherishing every living moment that you have.

If you want a story that pairs two unlikely characters as friends or a story about two youth facing insurmountable odds, pick up this book. It reminded me a lot of George and Lennie from Of Mice and Men. You don't always get to control the cards you are dealt, but you can choose to make the best of the situation and to open your heart along the way.

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