Sixteen-year-old Cameron Smith is trying to get through high school (and life) with the least amount of effort. Will being diagnosed with Creutzfeldt-Jakob's disease help him realize that there is more to life than just getting by?
At first, I had a hard time keeping up with this book and following the plot, but I stuck with it, and I'm glad I did because I really liked the book. It helped that I did a little bit of research about Creutzfeldt-Jakob's disease. It was interesting to see Cameron change his attitude about how he approaches life. At first, he didn't really care about anything (grades, friends, or family), but as his trip continued, he realized what was really important. He even found friendship in the unlikeliest of people, and he actually let himself experience life and love and saw how important his family really is to him. It was just too bad that he realized it a little too late.
When I first heard about this book, I thought, "Doesn't bovine refer to cows?", and then when I read it and realized that Cameron is diagnosed with Creutzfelt-Jakob's disease (AKA mad cow disease), I realized how the title fit in with the story. I think that in a way, it was Cameron's way of dealing with his disease. As I was reading and got to know Cameron, I feel that he would have said something like, "Hey, I'm going bovine!" when talking to people about his disease, as though it was his way of making it sound cool, even though he didn't really care much for fitting in, he still wanted to save face and not draw too much attention to himself.
Going Bovine won the Michael L. Printz Award for Excellence in Young Adult Literature. It was also a Publisher's Weekly Best Book of the Year book and an amazon.com Best Book of the Year book.
|Libba Bray, the author of Going Bovine|