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Monday, June 22, 2009

Comeback Kids: Two-Minute Drill by Mike Lupica

Mike Lupica… Here’s a name you’ll see if you’re trolling for tweenager books in Borders or looking especially for boy-friendly authors. I had to sample one of his books. If the rest of the meal is as good as this appetizer, we’ve found a solid chef, parents.

Mike L. is one author I’m testing in my quest to find lots of boy-books. I’m so glad I “scored.” This guy has to be a dad, and a responsible one at that. He writes from the perspective of adolescence and all that entails (with a lot of reference to sports), and, at least in this sampling, does not descend into the crass language or morally-deficient aspects of the popular culture. What a relief. It’s a clean, fun read.

In his Comeback Kids Series: Two Minute Drill, Scott is a smart boy who arrives at a new school and gets bullied by the big guy of the sixth-grade class. Here’s the “cool” thing. The cool-kid of the class comes to his rescue. Now, this kid, Chris, (a big-time athlete), not only has higher status than the bully, he actually acknowledges the bully’s crummy behavior while adding that the bully is actually a good guy, deep down. How’s that for Christian charity (even if it isn’t named as such?).

He offers a hand of friendship to Scott. This is a huge help to Scott, but in a turn-about, Scott becomes Chris’ tutor and keeps him in football by avoiding special-ed classes and extra tutoring time after school.

The coolest part of the book is when Scott gets a chance to make the winning play of the big game of the year for his team after proving to be a big-hearted(but not-overly-talented) player.

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