The Honest Truth

Along Came Cancer

“‘I don’t want to die, Beau. Not here.’ As soon as I said it, out loud in the darkness with the hugeness of the mountain in front of me, all the anger and aloneness that had haunted my heart blew away like the clouds from the mountaintop,” (213).

            Dan Gemeinhart’s The Honest Truth is Mark’s story after he finds out his cancer is back. He reasons that since he probably won’t live much longer, the last thing he’ll do is climb Mount Rainer.  

            He has to escape his town in Washington by running away, which leads to his parents filing a missing child report. His picture is everywhere, and he is almost recognized. Upon his arrival to Seattle, he is robbed and left with $20. But these aren’t his only problems: the only reason Mark feels the need to climb the mountain is that he’s so blindsided by his anger towards the world, to people for feeling sorry for him, and toward his body for having cancer in the first place.

            The theme that emerges is that a person is never alone. He might feel like nothing would happen if he died, but there are always people who care about him.

            Gemeinhart’s book is similar to John Green’s The Fault in Our Stars, because of the cancer aspect, and Paper Towns, because of the protagonist’s sense of aloneness and wanderlust.  

            I rated this CRF a ten because it kept me reading and wanting to know more about Mark’s journey, and for providing me with a new perspective of what would’ve been another cancer story.