Friday, April 24, 2020

Double Foul (Camp Average #2)

Battle, Craig. Double Foul (Camp Average #2)
April 15th 2020 by Owlkids Books
E ARC provided by Edelweiss Plus

Mack is back at Camp Avalon after Camp Average, but things have changed. After the camp finally won a game, counselor Winston was promoted and has developed an elite athlete track at the camp. The camp is also taking girls for the first time, and Mack's friend Nicole transfers from a nearby camp, glad to have better facilities. Mack is happy just to drift along in the non-elite track, but when all of his activities mysteriously get canceled, he ends up on the basketball team, which is headed for an important basketball tournament. In another wrinkle, each camp can only send one team, so the girls are determined to defeat the boys. It doesn't help that Winston keeps throwing the team into competitions, even at Mega Fun Zone, that tear the team apart. There's even talk that a scout is coming to a game, which puts the athletes in a tizzy. Mack gets the upper hand when he registers the basketball team he has put together as "Camp Average", and Winston's entry is thrown out. The team does very well, but almost doesn't make it to the second round of competition because their bus to the event is mysteriously canceled. Andre comes to the rescue and gets a ride with Camp Killington, their rival, but this helps comes at a price. It looks like there's more to Camp Average's story when next summer rolls around.
Strengths: This was fast-paced, funny, had interesting characters, and had a nice turn with the girls being involved in sports. Young readers will love that Winston is evil and root for Mack and his fellow campers to take down the short-short, tube sock wearing villain and return their camp to its average roots. There are enough basketball play-by-plays that I got confused, which means there is just enough basketball for my sports fans.
Weaknesses: There was a lot going on, and a lot of characters. I got a little confused, but then I read too quickly.
What I really think: The first book hasn't circulated terribly well, but I haven't been promoting it as a sports book, either. I'll purchase this second title, which will help the series because basketball is definitely the sport of choice at my school.

Ms. Yingling

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