HOTHEAD by Cal Ripken Jr.

HOTHEAD

Age Range: 8 - 12
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KIRKUS REVIEW

Conor Sullivan’s glove is “where base hits go to die,” but his temper may be where his baseball dreams die. Lately, his family has been having problems; his father is out of work, there’s never enough money to do the family things they used to do and he probably won’t get to go to the prestigious Brooks Robinson Camp. Stress may be behind Conor’s recent behaviors: smashing his batting helmet on the ground, waving a fist at the opposing pitcher, tossing his glove in rage, then kicking it past the pitcher’s mound and yelling at his best friend. Conor has acquired the nickname Psycho Sully, the boy with the thermonuclear attitude. What takes this story beyond the usual sports fare is the cast of caring and well-drawn characters—teammates, family and friends, including a new girl friend—that make Conor want to shape up. Written with Ripken’s obvious knowledge of the game, Conor’s story rings true, with plenty of good baseball action. If Conor’s not always in good spirits, the novel is, with likable characters, lively baseball action and the usual dreams of playing in the big leagues—in Conor’s case, at Camden Yards. Ripken and Cowherd, like Conor and his Babe Ruth League Orioles, make a winning team. (Fiction. 8-12)

Pub Date: March 8th, 2011
ISBN: 978-1-4231-4000-9
Page count: 144pp
Publisher: Disney-Hyperion
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: Feb. 1st, 2011




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