Children's books and book reviews - reading resource for kids, teachers, librarians, parents

Young readers book reviews for ages 8 to 12 years old

*Two-Minute Drill: Mike Lupica's Comeback Kids* by Mike Lupica- young readers fantasy book review
Also by Mike Lupica:

Hot Hand: Mike Lupica's Comeback Kids

Two-Minute Drill: Mike Lupica's Comeback Kids
by Mike Lupica
Ages 9-12 176 pages Philomel September 2007 Hardcover    

Scott Parry is the brainiest kid in school. He knows the answer to every question posed by his teachers, and he often has to stop himself from raising his hand in class, lest he be mocked by his peers. But, being the new kid in town, Scott wants most of all to fit in and make friends. When tough Jimmy Dolan bullies Scott, star quarterback Chris Conlan, comes to Scott’s rescue. A friendship develops between the clumsy Scott and the preternatural athlete.

The friendship and the story take a dramatic turn when Chris reveals to Scott that he is dyslexic, and that his inability to read may keep him off the town’s football team even before the season starts. How the two friends team up to address the quarterback’s personal problem forms a parallel track to the story of the team’s football season.

Sportswriter Mike Lupica brings his knowledge of football, particularly the grassroots kind, to add considerable verisimilitude to the on-field action. As a father of three boys, he probably knows what it is like for a young man to play on a team. Scott Parry handles his bench role with equanimity, probably a lot better than his father. In the meantime, he practices his drop kicks (a way of kicking field goals in football, much like how a punter punts the ball) assiduously in the field his father has built for him in his backyard. As the football season hurtles toward a stirring climax, Lupica builds up the suspense regarding Scott’s role and brings it to a satisfying end.

Mike Lupica’s new series for middle schoolers combines graphic on-field sports action with enduring themes of friendship and loyalty. The characters are three-dimensional and ones to whom readers can easily relate. The writing is simple and focused on keeping the story moving. There are lessons to be drawn from the story, but Lupica does it subtly rather than hitting them with a sledgehammer.

Young readers book reviews for ages 8 to 12 years old

click here to browse children's board book reviews
click here to browse children's picture book reviews
click here to browse young readers book reviews
click here to browse young readers book reviews
click here to browse young adult book reviews
click here to browse parenting book reviews
web reviews
  Ram Subramanian/2007 for curled up with a good kid's book  

For grown-up fiction, nonfiction and speculative fiction book reviews,
visit our sister site Curled Up With a Good Book (