Tuesday, August 24, 2010

YA Picks: Sports and Such

Payback TimePayback Time
by Carl Deuker
Houghton, Mifflin, Harcourt
2010
298 pages

Since grade school Mitch True has dreamed of becoming a real reporter--a hard-nosed investigative reporter like the ones he saw in the movie All the President's Men. At the beginning of his senior year, it is looking good that Mitch will become editor of Lincoln High School's paper. When Alyssa Hanson is named editor, Mitch nearly quits. She gives him "Sports." Who does she think she is? He is the most senior reporter on the paper--why does he get such a low-life job like sports?

Mitch almost quits, but sees an opportunity to break a story--maybe someone will get busted for steroids or maybe there'll be a huge story in football scholarships.

He teams up with school photographer Kimi Yon and together they find a story in a transfer student named Angel Marichal. Who is this mystery football player, and where did he come from? And what's his secret? Why is Coach McNulty hiding Angel's past? Could it be that the coach and the student are cheating for the championship? This could be the story of the year!

There is an underlying secret in Angel's past--a secret so dangerous that it will threaten the championship and change all their lives.

Carl Deuker not only writes for sports fans but anyone who loves a good read. Solid sports writing with a great story for the non-sports fan.

Not just for boys. Anyone who loves journalism will love this book.
Recommended for reluctant readers. Recommended for all YA collections grades 7-12.

FTC Required Disclaimer: I received this book from the publisher. I received no monetary compensation for my review, and this review was not influenced by the fact that the publisher sent me a copy. In fact, I probably would not have reviewed a "football" book at all, but since it was sent to me, I decided to read it. I found it highly interesting and will recommend it to my students to read.

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