One Shot Away

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One Shot Away
Genre(s)
Age Range
14+
Release Date
October 12, 2012
ISBN
9780062083234
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They're all just one shot away

It's senior year and the last season for Diggy, Jimmy, and Trevor on the Molly Pitcher High School varsity wrestling team. And they all want the same thing: to win.

But Diggy's got to compete with his older brother's legacy, and now he's in danger of losing his spot to the newcomer, Trevor. Not to mention he's got girl problems. Jimmy's got the cops on his tail and a girlfriend who looks down on him. Then Diggy does the unthinkable—he betrays a teammate. Can the team forgive him? And can he forgive himself?

With the pressure building and loyalties splintering, Diggy, Jimmy, and Trevor have got one shot to make weight and get onto the mat. Because pinning your opponent is about more than just winning.

Editor reviews

2 reviews
An Important Story To Be Told
Overall rating
 
3.3
Plot
 
4.0
Characters
 
2.0
Writing Style
 
4.0
One Shot Away by T. Glen Coughlin was a really unique read. It is the perfect blend and will appeal to both guys and gals. There is so much of real life in One Shot Away - T. Glen Coughlin really captured what high school is like and did so in a unique way, through the eyes of wrestlers.
I loved T. Glen Coughlin's choice of wrestling - It is the perfect sport to illustrate the fact that guys have some of the same issue girls do, but they get highlighted much less. Watching the boys struggle with eating - it's the decision to feel good or make weight for a sport. Each of the boys in One Shot Away had such a compelling story and while they weren't pretty, they were important to tell.

The one place where One Shot Away fell short for me was with the characters. They didn't differ enough in my mind and I had issues telling them apart. I never really remember which story went with which character.

One Shot Away was very different from most books I read, yet books with a sports premise are always of interest to me. T. Glen Coughlin is a talented writer who chose a very unique, but important to tell.
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Wrestling on and off the mats
Overall rating
 
4.3
Plot
 
4.0
Characters
 
5.0
Writing Style
 
4.0
Diggy's father is living vicariously through his sons. Diggy's older brother did very well, but is now in college and enjoying his studies and NOT wrestling. The biggest problem Diggy faces is that he is always hungry and has gone up a wait class, so he may lose his spot at 152 to Trevor unless he can cut enough.

Trevor's father died in a car accident, and he and his mother are running a seedy motel for a man interested in Trevor's mother. Trevor gets constant grief for being Native American, but he is a better wrestler than Diggy.

Jimmy is hoping to become a PE teacher, but his father is involved in some shady thefts at construction sites, and has taken Jimmy along with him. When the police start investigating, Jimmy knows that this could ruin his chances at a college scholarship, which is his only chance out.
Good Points
Not only do we learn lots of interesting things about each of these characters, who are struggling so hard to make their way in the world, we get a good look into the team dynamics of wrestling and absolutely terrific descriptions of wrestling. Coughlin clearly paid a LOT of attention when he attended his son's wrestling meets. Readers who love Alfred C. Martino's Pinned (had a pregnant girlfriend in that one) and other titles like Wallace's Wrestling Sturbridge, will love the vivid descriptions and flawed characters in this book.
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User reviews

1 review
Overall rating
 
5.0
Plot
 
5.0(1)
Characters
 
5.0(1)
Writing Style
 
5.0(1)
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One Shot Away
Overall rating
 
5.0
Plot
 
5.0
Characters
 
5.0
Writing Style
 
5.0
Coughlin digs deeply into the heart of not only the teenage experience, but into the cruelty of competition that comes with High School wrestling. The characters are genuine, all facing different obstacles, making it a relevant story to the experiences of any young reader. Often I've come across reviews that label Coughlin's novels as "gritty" and "dark", so if you're looking for a softhearted story with some definitive triumph, this book is not for you. A great read for a young audience.
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