Booklist reviews New Paul Book for Teens

February Booklist Review - Paul Gets a Summer Job

Booklist    |    Carlos Orellana    |    March 24, 2003

It's the summer of 1979, and Paul, a recent high-school dropout and an apprentice at a local print shop, is broke, unhappy and living with his parents in Canada. A phone call from a friend who is running a summer camp for underprivileged kids allows Paul to escape into a job as a replacement counselor. Paul is apprehensive at first as he's not great with kids and doesn't know the first thing about braving the wilderness, but after a rocky start, he bonds with his fellow counselors, the kids begin to grow on him, and he falls in love with his partner, Annie. Rabagliati's simple black-and-white line drawings and classic comics format are well-suited to this slacker-goes-to-summer camp tale, which has plenty teens can relate to--whether it's Paul's dissatisfaction with the authority figures at his school or a first love. The final act will ring true for older readers nostalgic about their own first overnight camp. The book was originally published in French, and this English translation includes a glossary of terms and places.

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