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Jimmy [Paperback]

Jane Renouf
5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)

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Book Description

29 Mar 1993
This is a mother's true story of her seven-year-old son who was diagnosed as having leukemia and who, 20 months later, one of the unlucky 5%, died. This book provides a frank account of how the family, and indeed, Jimmy coped with the anguish of treatment, illness, pain and eventual mortal relapse. The book makes painful but heart-warming reading. CancerCare, an organization run by doctors and volunteers to support cancer sufferers and their families, is using this book as a training manual for carers.

Product details

  • Paperback: 240 pages
  • Publisher: Flamingo (29 Mar 1993)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0006378536
  • ISBN-13: 978-0006378532
  • Product Dimensions: 19.4 x 13.2 x 2 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 1,104,071 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A life changing book 8 Jun 2008
This book is one of a few that I read over and over, and never fails to raise a tear. I'm not a particularly sentimental person, and rarely cry at books, but the way that Jimmy's story is told by his mother, is profoundly moving.

As it says on the cover, his story is not particularly remarkable in itself. Many children with cancer, particularly twenty years ago, did die from their condition, and many were ill for much longer than Jimmy. What makes his story remarkable is the way it is told. His mother infuses some of the joy that Jimmy obviously brought into her life into every sentence. I really got to know him, and by the time he died, I felt I had lost a friend, despite never meeting him. There is remarkably little self pity, given what an awful time the family went through in those twenty months, but it gives an amazing insight into family life when a child is diagnosed with a life threatening illness.

The words used, and the anecdotes recounted make for a beautifully crafted record of Jimmy's short life, enough to make anyone proud. Jane Renouf really does have a way with words, and I often read a sentence over and over, and particularly marvel at her ability to write about such a personal subject, so soon after a tragedy in her life.

I first read this book when I was 14, and it was a major factor in my decision to become a doctor. I read the copy in the school library many times and when I went away to university I had some difficulty in obtaining my own copy! If only Amazon marketplace had been around then! I followed through on my goal and I am now a trainee paediatrician, still with a special interest in oncology, and I also take children with serious illnesses away on free holidays in my spare time. I often think of Jimmy and wonder if he knows how much he has influenced my life.

If one book can make that big a difference to me, then surely it is worth your while to read it?!
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5.0 out of 5 stars Profoundly Moving 20 Jun 2011
This book is un-put-down-able and unbearable in equal portions. Jane Renouf is a particularly articulate writer and I felt an enormous respect for her bravery and compassion. Her account of the effect of her son's slow death and their last conversations is heartbreakingly honest and I thought of little else for days afterwards. I was amazed to find that the family lived just round the corner from where I worked at the time (and still work) in the Lake District and that Jimmy is buried in the local churchyard. I just wish I could have found some freesias for him...
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