Fighting the Good Fight: Kids and Cancer

Never Eighteen by Megan Bostick
Seventeen-year-old Austin, aware that life is short, asks his best friend and secret love, Kaylee, to take him to visit people and places in and around Tacoma, Washington, so that he can try to make a difference in the time he has left.

Deadline by Chris Crutcher
Given the medical diagnosis of one year to live, high school senior Ben Wolf decides to fulfill his greatest fantasies, ponders his life's purpose and legacy, and converses through dreams with a spiritual guide known as "Hey-Soos."

The Fault in Our Stars by John Green
Sixteen-year-old Hazel, a stage IV thyroid cancer patient, has accepted her terminal diagnosis until a chance meeting with a boy at cancer support group forces her to reexamine her perspective on love, loss, and life.

I'm Not Her by Janet Gurtler
Brainy Tess Smith is the younger sibling of the beautiful, popular, volleyball-scholarship-bound Kristina. When Kristina is diagnosed with bone cancer, it drastically changes both sisters' lives. Sometimes the things that annoy us the most about our siblings are the ones we'd miss the most if we lost them.

Side Effects by Amy Goldman Koss
Everything changes for Isabelle, not quite fifteen, when she is diagnosed with lymphoma--but eventually she survives and even thrives.

A Summer to Die by Lois Lowry
Thirteen-year-old Meg envys her sister's beauty and popularity. Her feelings don't make it any easier for her to cope with Molly's strange illness and eventual death.

Breathless by Lurlene McDaniel
A high school diving champion develops bone cancer in this story told from the points of view of the diver, his best friend, his sister, and his girlfriend.

Just One Wish by Janette Rallison
Seventeen-year-old Annika tries to cheer up her little brother Jeremy before his surgery to remove a cancerous tumor by bringing home his favorite television actor, Steve Raleigh, the star of "Teen Robin Hood."

Drums, Girls, and Dangerous Pie by Jordan Sonnenblick
When his younger brother is diagnosed with leukemia, thirteen-year-old Steven tries to deal with his complicated emotions, his school life, and his desire to support his family.

Secret Vampire by L.J. Smith
Poppy thought the summer would last forever. Then she was diagnosed with terminal cancer. Now Poppy's only hope for survival is James, her friend and secret love. A vampire in the Night World, James can make Poppy immortal. But first they both must risk everything to go against the laws of Night World.

The Last Summer of the Death Warriors by Francisco X. Stork
Seventeen-year-old Pancho is bent on avenging the senseless death of his sister, but after he meets D.Q, who is dying of cancer, and Marisol, one of D.Q.'s caregivers, both boys find their lives changed by their interactions.

The Probability of Miracles by Wendy Wunder
Having spent several years in and out of hospitals for a life-threatening illness, pragmatic sixteen-year-old Cam is relocated by her miracle-seeking mother to a town in Maine known for its mystical healing qualities.

This book list was created to coincide with New Canaan Girl Scout Lauren Jansen’s 2012 photo exhibit at the Library, "Every Picture Tells a Tale," which tells the inspirational stories of young, local cancer survivors who shared their challenging and hopeful experiences with her.