Friday, May 12, 2017

Guy Friday- Fair Ball

Even More Blather:
Clearly, the end of the year hits me hard, and I often find myself crying over things like Constance Green's A Girl Called Al or, this morning, Tommy Greenwald's The Real Us. (Go. Go to Edelweiss Above the Treeline RIGHT NOW and download an E ARC.).

I'm tired. 7th grade classes have been working on Renaissance Fair Projects all week and have managed to get glitter banned from the library, I'm trying to move all of the nonfiction to the wall so I have more room for fiction, the workroom sink is permanently clogged, and I haven't even begun to panic about getting all of the books returned.

I just spent another eight weeks in an orthopedic boot, which made chaperoning 8th graders in D.C. a bit more challenging. The summer will be spent in physical therapy and swimming and biking rather than running. On the bright side, my forearms are NOT sore. Or my ears. My ears are good.

There are other bright sides. We have about 80 students interested in Cross Country for next year. The students are so sad that the books are due. They hover over the donated books like teenage boys eyeing the last piece of pizza. And David Lubar sent me a sweet e mail that included the line "Thanks, again, for all you do. "

So! Another cup of tea, a wad of tissues, and I think I will wait until this evening to review Sonnenblick's The Secret Sheriff of Sixth Grade so I'm not a soggy mess when the day starts!

30312556Jeter, Derek and Mantell, Paul. Fair Ball (The Contract #4)
April 18th 2017 by Simon & Schuster/Paula Wiseman Books
E ARC from Edelweiss Above the Treeline

The Indians are in the final four of the Kalamazoo baseball championship, and Derek hopes that his team can work together to win. He's also hoping that for his birthday he can invite his friend Dave for a week at his grandparents' house. He and Dave are also supposed to have a sleepover, but Dave keeps backing out and doesn't want to talk about it. Sharlee is taking a karate class, and one of Derek's teammates, Gary, is taking it as well but doing very poorly. Vijay is a little irritated with Derek's insistence on being friends with Dave when he seems to want to avoid Derek. All of this puts stress on the team, and even brings down Derek's grades a bit. Eventually, Dave's parents' problems with Derek's family are worked out, and the team is able to come together. Will they win the championship?
Strengths: This is a good length for a middle grade sports book, had a lot of baseball, and incorporated important life lessons. The best part is always Derek's supportive family.
Weaknesses: I wish that Derek were a little older, and the big discussion of diversity in the middle of the book really slowed things down and seemed overly preachy.
What I really think: Baseball books aren't as popular as other sports books in my library, but these are a solid circulator and I will no doubt buy the entire nine book series.
Ms. Yingling

No comments:

Post a Comment