Athlete vs. Mathlete
February 05, 2013
Owen Evans lights up the scoreboards. His brother, Russell, rocks the school boards. These twin brothers couldn't be more different. They've long kept the peace by going their separate ways, but all that is about to change. The new basketball coach recruits Russell for the seventh grade team and a jealous Owen has to fight to stay in the game. When someone tries to steal Russell's spot as captain of the mathlete team, will the two be able to put aside their differences in order to save his position? Or will they be sidelined?Perfect for fans of Matt Christopher and Andrew Clements alike, this is a lighthearted and hilarious look at what happens when brains meets brawn meets basketball.
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I really liked it because I think my students will. Russell and Owen are both successful in their own circles, but not as successful in other areas. The tension between the boys is realistic, and neither are overly stereotypical. Not enough middle grade books touch on time management and exploring other activities. What I liked best was Russell's struggle with personal identity. He was perfectly happy with who he was, but would he be even happier including basketball?
W.C. Mack did a great job at moving the story along, too. It never bogs down, even when the boys are struggling with homework. The descriptions of the basketball games are great, too, and a lot of my readers like to read game descriptions, so this adds a lot to the book.
I can't wait to see if this author comes out with another book about these characters! I would love that.
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