Sunday, December 30, 2007

Paul Has a Summer Job

Author: Michel Rabagliati

First line: In the summer of '79 I was working as an apprentice in a downtown print shop.

Why you should read this book: It's a coming of age story about Paul, artistically talented but an academic failure, and his unexpected job at an overnight camp for disadvantaged children the summer after he drops out of school. From an unhappy, self-absorbed kid who can hardly take his campers' jibes about his bushy eyebrows let alone his teammate's criticism, he grows into a confident young man, experiencing all the requisite young-man-coming-of-age-at-summer-camp milestones. The art is slightly goofy, but the characters and the plot are deep, rich, and compelling.

Why you shouldn't read this book: You shudder to think about what teenagers do alone at a secluded lake with unlimited access to beer.

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