A Book for Boys About Cancer

 

THE ONLY BOOK FOR BOYS ON CANCER

Benjamin Rubenstein survived cancer twice as a teenager. He will publish the first nonfiction book for boys about cancer, SECRETS OF THE CANCER-SLAYING SUPER MAN based on his book for adults, TWICE How I Became a Cancer-Slaying Super Man before I Turned 21. This book was heralded for its searing honesty by Library Journal; for its humor by bestselling author Jonathan Kellerman (who is also a psychologist specializing in pediatric cancer at USC); and for its optimism by the Midwest Book Review.

SECRETS  IS AN ADAPTATION OF A POPULAR ADULT TITLE by Ben Rubenstein

As Ben visited pediatric cancer wards around the country, the children he spoke to wanted to read his book. Unhappily, its college boy references to sex, alcohol and street language were not appropriate for a young audience. So the dynamic young author then wrote a version that would show kids what happens when a person gets cancer.

He worked with graphic designer and illustrator Kenneth F. Raniere, also a cancer survivor, to present the cancer experience in words and pictures in just a hundred pages. The result, Secrets of the Cancer-Slaying Super Man, is an easy- to- read guide to the disease and its cure. Many adult readers who are capable of handling the rough language of the original book prefer this simpler treatment. An hour of reading can supply all the basic information a person confronting cancer for the first time—especially friends and family who want to help but aren’t sure what to do.

FACT-PACKED AND INSPIRING

The message of the fact-packed guide to cancer treatment is inspirational without being insipid. Rubenstein convinced himself that he was strong enough to beat the round cells that had invaded his body. Using episodes from Saturday morning superhero shows, the escapades of action movies, the maneuvers of professional athletes and the prayers he learned in the synagogue, he convinced himself that he could win this battle by never complaining and never losing his courage. The book traces his first encounter with bone cancer at sixteen, dashing his dreams of becoming a tennis star, to his second bout as a UVA student when he had to deal with a stem cell transplant.