From School Library Journal
Gr 7-10-An adaptation of the 2003 adult book with the same title. It is an admiring biography constructed from long stretches of personal experience with Farmer, international health specialist and infectious disease expert, whose focus was always the Haitian poor. Farmer has spent his life taking modern medicine (as well as schools, houses, sanitation, and water systems) to a poverty-stricken area of Haiti and to underdogs around the world. Lending "a voice to the voiceless," and working as a clinician as well as an organizer, he developed Partners in Health, funded first by a Boston philanthropist and later by the Gates Foundation and now internationally active. While French's adaptation follows the same sequencing, his compression removes much of the detail that made the original so readable and interesting. Omissions make episodes difficult to understand and, at least in one case, a description of one character is applied to another. Still, books showing how one person can make a difference are always welcome in young adult literature and this one will be appreciated where the young readers' edition of Greg Mortensen and David Oliver Relin's Three Cups of Tea (Dial, 2009) has been popular. But for the full flavor of the man's life and his impact on the author, older readers should seek out the original.-Kathleen Isaacs, Children's Literature Specialist, Pasadena, MDα(c) Copyright 2011. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
Pulitzer Prize–winning journalist Kidder’s inspiring story of American doctor Paul Farmer has now been adapted—to good effect—for young readers, with the help of coauthor French. As Kidder demonstrates, Farmer is a remarkable man. A noted epidemiologist who has worked with such infectious diseases as tuberculosis and AIDS, he is also a medical anthropologist, a clinician, and an expert in public health. His ambitious goal is to improve health policy for the poor on a global scale. By making himself a presence in the book, Kidder becomes a surrogate for the reader as he travels with Farmer to the slums of Lima, Peru; the prisons of Russia and Siberia; and to Farmer’s base, in Haiti, the poorest country in the Western Hemisphere and a place Farmer has loved since he was a college student. Kidder expertly provides context for Farmer’s life and work, including a look at his eccentric upbringing and his relationships with friends and colleagues. Though sometimes complex, the story is always accessible and often fascinating. Best of all, its focus on Farmer the humanitarian provides a much-needed education in empathy. Grades 7-12. --Michael Cart
--This text refers to the