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BREAKAWAY by Andrea Montalbano

BREAKAWAY

By Andrea Montalbano

Age Range: 8 - 12

Pub Date: May 1st, 2010
ISBN: 978-0-399-25215-0
Publisher: Philomel

Twelve-year-old Lily is a soccer dynamo. Along with her best friend and teammate Vee, she longs to be chosen for the state select team. The volatile combination of Lily’s short temper and single-minded focus on personal success not only causes her to be suspended from her team, however, but also costs her that coveted spot on the state team. Under the gentle guidance of her coach, Lily’s forced inactivity leads to her reevaluate her goals both on and off the field. Montalbano’s love of the game is clearly evident in the detailed, technical descriptions of each play. Her depiction of youth sports tackles fanatical fans, overbearing parents and jealous peers. While the action is fast-paced, the story line takes a few detours, with several intriguing subplots that are hinted at yet remain unexplored. Although readers may find this frustrating, how Lily learns to manage herself and her game remains compelling and provides a valuable life lesson for both her and readers. Perhaps a sequel is in order? (Fiction. 8-12)