08 March 2009

Jack Tumor; Anthony McGowan

Jack Tumor Jack Tumor by Anthony McGowan

My review

rating: 4 of 5 stars

Difficult to think of a book about a boy and his brain tumor as funny, but this one really is. Hector, who's been having rather severe headaches, starts hearing a voice. Not just any voice, it's the voice of Jack... Jack Tumor (who TALKS LIKE DEATH if you know what I mean).

Jack's funny at times, cranky at others. It's sort of like Heck's subconscious but better - at one point (and I'm paraphrasing here) Jack admits that he has access to everything in Hector's brain, including stuff he doesn't know is there. Some of that is girls (Uma and Amanda), some of that is how to best the school bullies, and some of it is bad graveyard poetry. Go figure.

Mom's a hippie from the CND demonstrations, serving mung bean soup and various icky-sounding teas, and doesn't seem terribly good at Mom-stuff, particularly when her son is finally diagnosed with the tumor. Or after, it seems.

The majority of the action takes place in a fortnight, which seems short but there's a lot packed in. I think the boys will like it, despite its being written in English, not American.

View all my reviews.


  1. Hey, Lazygal, nice review - thanks very much. I think this is the first to appear anywhere (of the US edition). The Junior Library Guild have made Jack Tumor a Spring 2009 selection, so maybe this'll be the one that wrenches me out of my much-deserved obscurity!
    Anyway, thanks again
    Anthony McGowan
    (and, yep, I've been googling myself again.)

  2. Glad to see someone else who's read & enjoyed this one. I don't know why it's not getting more reviews on YA blogs in particular. I loved it!