professornana (professornana) wrote,

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'tis the season

for football, of course. Even though afternoon temps are hovering near triple digits, football two a days began weeks ago and the first scrimmage is this weekend. So, in honor of football season opening, let me recommend CRACKBACK by John Coy. Miles Manning is first team again this year, and he looks forward to a winning season. Little things conspire to make his season less than satisfactory. There's Coach Stahl who never seems satisfied with his plays, rather like Miles' dad who seldom has a kind word. Then, his best friend encourages him to use steroids to build muscle. When Miles demurs, his friend abandons him. A blown play lands Miles on the second team. But, an interesting assignment on immigration and family genealogy brings Miles back to a sense of himself and to a new relationship with Sam and the lovely Lucia. Coy has crafted a strong novel, replete with terrific scenes from the playing field. His true genius is the ability to balance the sports story with the nuances of Miles' relationships with peers and parents. The book reads quickly, another huge point in its favor. So, score a touchdown for Coy and CRACKBACK.

A side note: we have been listening to the audio of LIGHTNING THIEF in the car this past week and are finally on the last CD. We pulled up to the house this afternoon, almost to the end, amid groans from Corrie and Natalie (14 and 12 respectively) and I had to promise they couild finish listening on the drive to the first day of school tomorrow. How's that for holding interest especially since Nat has already read the book itself.
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