The Last Martin

Sunday, October 9, 2011

I plop into the mud in front of my dad’s older brother. He died so fast. He died so…1998. “The year I was born.” I stare at the hideous pattern on the stones. “When a new Martin is born, the living one dies.” My mind races. My name is cursed!

Book: The Last Martin by Jonathan Friesen, Zonderkidz, 2011
Genre: Adventure/Fantasy (kind of)
Target Audience: Boys 11-15
Subjects: Death, health, curses, friendship, relationship with parents
Summary: What would you do if you knew you only had 3 months left to live? That’s what Martin has to decide. Live for all it’s worth? Fight to break the curse that allows only one Martin to live at a time? Give up in defeat and despair? His decision affects those around him as well. His old friend Charley, new friend Poole and potential girlfriend Julia are in this with him and determined to help do all they can to keep Martin around past his due date.
Notes: This is a “Christian” book because Poole teaches Martin to say one thing he is thankful for each day as a prayer. He doesn’t look in God’s Word for help, doesn’t pray for wisdom, or anything, it’s just “Christian” because of the shouting a sentence of thankfulness. The lesson in the book is about living to the fullest. Matrin’s mom is, as he calls it, a “germaphobic” – meaning she won’t let Martin do anything or go anywhere that he might catch a germ or get injured in any way. Her way of loving him is to protect him from life itself. When Martin realizes he only has three months to live, he decides to do that things he once longed to do but gave up on because of his mom – including starting a prune fight in the cafeteria! It’s an entertaining book to read and a good reminder to not let fear stop us from living. But it’s sadly missing some things that might have truly made a “Christian” book.
Recommendation Scale: 3/5
Reviewer: J:-)mi

2 Timothy 1:7 – For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind.


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