BREAKTHROUGH | JACK ANDRAKA | BOOK REVIEW

How does one describe ? prodigy? scientific icon? icon? teenager? geek? bullied teenager? genius? While all the labels fit there are two that resonate strongest with me; inspiration and motivated normal teenager with vision and determination. Andraka is only eighteen and in that time has done more on this planet than most –  is his first memoir that will be the first of many. He is the guy who can singlehandedly save and improve mankind if he puts his sights on it. is not only the best book I have read this year so far, it is the one book that every school child on the planet SHOULD study. is out now at all good bookstores or you can buy it HERE on eBook and paperback from publishers, SCRIBE. You can also be inspired by following Jack on his WEBSITE, FB or TWITTER.

 

BREAKTHROUGH JACK ANDRAKA BOOK COVER IMAGE
BREAKTHROUGH | JACK ANDRAKA | SALTY POPCORN BOOK REVIEW | BOOK COVER IMAGE

 

At only fifteen Andraka had already found a simple way to detect pancreatic, ovarian, and lung cancer using a four-cent strip of paper. After losing a family friend to , he was inspired to find alternative ways to detect cancer. His method is four hundred times more effective than the previous detection method used by medical professionals and his story of getting it tested is enough for a book, the overcoming of adversity is incredible. For this achievement, he’s won a 2014 Jefferson Award, the nation’s most prestigious public service award.

He is the recipient of the Smithsonian American Ingenuity Award, was awarded first place in the Siemens We Can Change the World Challenge, and has received a National Geographic Explorer grant, the Intel Gordon Moore Award, and the Stockholm Water Prize. In 2013, he was Michelle Obama’s personal guest at the State of the Union address. Andraka has been featured in several documentaries, including Morgan Spurlock’s YOU DON’T KNOW JACK, and in newspapers and magazines around the world. He lives in Baltimore, Maryland, and enjoys kayaking and watching GLEE.

 

JACK ANDRAKA press image
BREAKTHROUGH | JACK ANDRAKA | SALTY POPCORN BOOK REVIEW | PRESS IMAGE

 

And out of all his achievements and the above bio, it is the odd little last sentence in there at the end that interests me the most “He lives in Baltimore, Maryland, and enjoys kayaking and watching GLEE.” That one sentence removes him from being a scientific prodigy and grounds him and reminds us he was also a normal teenager growing up in a normal world. All the achievements he took on his self but the normal world and overcoming that was probably his greatest achievement; incredibly driven but also going through puberty, slowly working out that he was gay and due to his lifestyle, his choices to be strong and to come out, he was bullied to the point of depression, withdrawal and a suicide attempt. But hey, why not pile on top of this the desire to cure cancer!!

Andraka is one of the most inspiring people I have ever come across on the planet, he is truly remarkable, and has overcome so much. I wish I could have read this book when I was at high school to know I was not alone with my sexuality, to have someone to share the incredible destruction of to someone you loved only to see them never talk to you ever again, to deal with and then to be inspired to be much better than I am.

 

President Obama and Jack Andraka IMAGE
BREAKTHROUGH | JACK ANDRAKA | SALTY POPCORN BOOK REVIEW | JACK ANDRAKA MEETS PRESIDENT OBAMA

 

BREAKTHROUGH is written by Andraka with the assistance of , it is a very easy read, light hearted, humorous, brave, intelligent, witty, inspiring, passionate, heartfelt and much much more. He may sound camp and this has caused incredible bullying and hatred from many people, but it is these things that have elevated him to achieve in a world he is comfortable with, that of science, and his trials and tribulations, determination and endless obsession have lifted him into the world of the scientific greats. He is already an Edison, on his way to being a Hawkings and he will be one of the greatest minds on the planet purely because he wanted to be, had encouraging and caring parents and because he never gives up.

Andraka is one of my heroes, and this book is a superb read that will make you laugh, a lot, his sense of humour and desires are so teenage, but so hilarious and brilliant you can’t help but fall in love with him and his way in the world. This should be a curriculum book in all schools in the world, it covers everything and may just encourage the school world to be a bit kinder to each other, inspire some people to become scientists and in one read make the world a better place. READ IT!

 

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