Friday, June 09, 2017

Tournament of Champions (Rip and Red #3)

31145121Bildner, Phil. Tournament of Champions (Rip and Red #3)
June 6th 2017 by Farrar, Straus and Giroux (BYR)
E ARC from Edelweiss Above the Treeline

Rip is excited that Mr. Acevedo wants him to be on the Clifton United basketball team that is going to a tournament, since he loves to play ball. He's also happy that Diego, who has recently battled cancer, is well enough to join the team. He is a little apprehensive about some of the members of the team who are coming from teams he has played against, and Red is not at all sure that he will be able to stay overnight in a hotel. Luckily, all of the adults are very supportive and try to figure out how the team will best be able to compete. Rip runs into another problem, though-- his father, who moved to Hong Kong when he was young, is moving back to the states and wants to be the third chaperone for the group. Rip is still angry that his father chose work over family, even though his parents were having difficulties at the time. Can Rip make peace with his family, make Red comfortable enough to join the group, and make the basketball tournament a success?
Strengths: While I appreciate the supportive adults, generally upbeat story line, and realistic problems that the team players face, the target demographic will be all about the basketball. Add a road trip to the mix, and this is a lot of fun.
Weaknesses: While I appreciate the diversity, there's so much of it that it feels forced after a while. Red is on the autism spectrum, there is a character in a wheel chair, one in foster care, Diego is a cancer survivor, and, Rip's mother is dating a woman. All good things, but putting so many of them together occasionally feels forced.
What I really think: I need to put all three of these on my purchase list. While I can't see my 7th or 8th graders reading them, the 6th graders will. These are perfect for elementary school.
  Ms. Yingling

1 comment:

  1. They say 'never judge a book by the cover' but I just love this cover! Fantastic effort by the author.