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First Year Read 2014 - 2015: "Just Don't Fall"

Common Read 2014-15

Josh Sundquist’s “Just Don’t Fall” - A Hilariously True Story of Childhood, Cancer, Amputation, Romantic Yearning, Truth, and Olympic Greatness.

This winning memoir of triumph over tragedy tells a story that has deeply affected thousands of readers. When he was just nine years old, Josh Sundquist was diagnosed with Ewing's sarcoma, a virulent cancer strain that eventually claimed his left leg. Told in a wide-eyed, often heartbreaking voice, Just Don't Fall is the astounding story of the boy Josh was and of the young man he became. An utterly heroic struggle through numerous hospitalizations and worse, he became an award-winning skier in the Paralympics and now is a renowned motivational speaker. “One of the most fresh and sincere works of inspiration to come along in years.” Publisher’s Weekly Review

Just Don’t Fall will be used in ACES100 and HLTH101 courses.

DU Common Read Goals:

Enhance the academic climate for first year students

Provide a common intellectual experience

Foster a sense of shared experience among DU students, faculty, staff, and external communities

Common Read Essay Contest 2014

When we accept that all people are faced with obstacles, some more than others, we are better prepared to examine our own situations and how our motivation, attitude and behavior affect the outcome of our goals.  In his book, Just Don’t Fall, Josh Sundquist discussed character: values, attitude, motivation, habits, work ethic, and general civility.  How can you take what you have learned from reading his life story and apply it to your life and your personal goals?  How can you encourage others to reach their goals? What can you do to uphold the value of learning through perseverance?

  • Contest open to all DU students taking ACES100 and HLTH101
  • Entries due by week of October 1, 2014
  • Click here for more details


 Josh Sundquist

Get to Know and Connect with Josh

Other books by Josh:

  • A leg up, published in 2009 is an anthology of newspaper columns Josh wrote in high school.
  • We Should Hang out Sometime: Embarrassingly, a True Story comes out in December 2014. Josh investigates why he only ever had one girlfriend, for twenty-three hours, back in the eighth grade. Josh tracks down the girls he tried to date and asks them what went wrong.

Related materials in the Davenport University Library Collection  (Just click on the title):