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BOX OUT by John Coy


by John Coy

Age Range: 12 & up

Pub Date: June 1st, 2008
ISBN: 978-0-439-87032-0
Publisher: Scholastic

High-school sophomore Liam Bergstrom is excited to have been called up from JV to play varsity basketball. But Coach Kloss’s team prayers and his subtly racist comments to Liam’s teammate Darius Buckner spur both players to quit the team. To top it off, Liam’s father criticizes him for quitting, and his girlfriend, studying in France, breaks up with him by e-mail. But Liam rebounds and trusts himself to find his own road, with the help of another coach, Darius and the poetry of Walt Whitman. Details of the game don’t always ring true—a bounce pass wouldn’t be “a bullet”; a high-school coach wouldn’t have to explain what boxing out is—but simple, present-tense prose, lively basketball action and the moral tenor of the novel make this a solid choice for sports fans. (Fiction. 12 & up)