Monday 14 June 2010

The Last Summer of the Death Warriors - Francisco X. Stork

The Last Summer of the Death Warriors - Francisco X. Stork

Pages: 344 (ARC)
Publisher: Scholastic
Release Date: 7th June 2010

Other Titles by this Author: The Way of the Jaguar, Behind the Eyes, Marcelo in the Real World

The Last Summer of the Death Warriors is a novel about the big things we live and die for, and the people who make those things matter. Two teenage boys bound together in a story of death, revenge and the ultimate friendship.

When Pancho arrives at St. Anthony's Home, he knows his time there will be short: If his plans succeed, he'll soon be arrested for the murder of his sister's killer. But then he's assigned to help D.Q., whose brain cancer has slowed neither his spirit nor his mouth.

D.Q. tells Pancho all about his "Death Warrior's Manifesto," which will help him to live out his last days fully--ideally, he says, with the love of the beautiful Marisol.

As Pancho tracks down his sister's murderer, he finds himself falling under the influence of D.Q. and Marisol, who is everything D.Q. said she would be; and he is inexorably drawn to a decision: to honour his sister and her death, or embrace the way of the Death Warrior and choose life.

The Last Summer of the Death Warriors is a funny and uplifting tale of a summer and a friendship that will change the life of two desperate teenage boys.

The title of this book suggests nearly 350 pages of sadness, well, it does to me anyway. And so I was surprised to find a book full of dry humour, hope, anger and revenge with only hints of sadness now and then. The friendship between Pancho and DQ grows slowly and turns into a connection that won’t be easily forgotten by the readers of The Last Summer of the Death Warriors.

What makes this friendship so special is Pancho and DQ. Now they are unforgettable! Pancho is the kind of guy I’d cross the road to avoid: angry, threatening, aggressive and coated in death. But there’s something incredibly attractive in his silence and mysteries. Pancho is the hugest contrast to chirpy, talkative, positive and terminally ill DQ. And yet they need each other to keep them going.

DQ’s Death Warrior Manifesto is what keeps him optimistic a rather hopeless situation and tries to pass it on to Pancho so he can let go of his desire for revenge. And I think that it’s a great manifesto to live by: no whining, embrace life and love everyone and everything. But it’s only great in theory, I doubt I’d be able to keep it up for even a day. I’m way too pessimistic!

I really enjoyed The Last Summer of the Death Warriors and I’m looking forward to reading more from Francisco X. Stork in the future.

For my 2010 100+ Reading Challenge



  1. I read Marcelo in the Real World and loved Stork's writing. Based on this awesome review you wrote I think I will also love The Last Summer of the Death Warriors.

  2. This one sounds great, not at all what I expected from the title, as you said! Thanks for the review :) x

  3. The characterisation sure does sound interesting. Thanks for another great review Sophie! :-)

  4. Good to hear that there is humour in it. I have it, but admit that it's one of those I thought of as "too serious" to read right now.

  5. It sounds really different! Thanks for the review!

  6. I hope you'll read Marcelo in the Real World -- it's terrific. :-) I just started The Last Summer of the Death Warriors, and I'm liking it so far. Great review!

  7. I can't wait to read this one. I too didn't think it would be funny, but I'm glad it is. Thanks for the review!


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