Cracking the Bell

FeaturedHot
 
4.7
 
0.0 (0)
3266 0
Cracking the Bell
Author(s)
Age Range
12+
Release Date
September 10, 2019
ISBN
978-0062453143
Buy This Book
      

Friday Night Lights meets Concussion in this powerful and important novel by Geoff Herbach, author of the Stupid Fast series, exploring the dangerous concussion crisis in football through the eyes of a high school team captain. Isaiah loves football. In fact, football saved Isaiah’s life, giving him structure and discipline after his sister’s death tore his family apart. But when Isaiah gets knocked out cold on the field, he learns there’s a lot more to lose than football. While recovering from a concussion, Isaiah wonders what his life would look like without the game. All his friends are on the team, and Isaiah knows they can’t win without him. The scholarship offer from Cornell is only on the table if he keeps playing. And without football, what would keep his family together? What would prevent him from sliding back into the habits that nearly destroyed him? Isaiah must decide how much he’s willing to sacrifice for the sport that gave him everything, even if playing football threatens to take away his future.

Editor reviews

1 reviews

Football vs. Life
Overall rating 
 
4.7
Plot 
 
4.0
Characters 
 
5.0
Writing Style 
 
5.0
Isaiah's family has struggled after the death of his sister in a car accident that wasn't her fault. The parents divorced, and Isaiah got in so much trouble that he had to spend some time institutionalized and was finally given the choice by his father-- either play football, or stay in the institution until he graduated. Football has been good for Isaiah. It has given him structure, a support group, and a long term goal of playing at college. When his poor tackling technique (head down!) causes him to sustain a significant concussion, he tries to hide it, getting up after being knocked out on the field, and continuing about his evening even though he later has no recollection of his actions. When he throws up the next day and feels unable to concentrate or even stand up for too long, his mother takes him to the doctor, who says that the concussion on top of earlier ones puts him at greater risk in the future, and that he would advise Isaiah not play football any more. That's enough for his mother, who doesn't want to lose another child, but Isaiah and his father are unwilling to give up the activity. Isaiah does a lot of soul searching about his sister's death, his relationship with the troubled Grace, and his plans for the future if he decides to quit football.
Good Points
Herbach writes tremendous Young Adult novels about characters who love sports and use them as a framework for their very existence. This is so true of many young people, and this depth of involvement in sports is rarely shown in books. To then take this focus away from a character because of a very current and real concern about the lasting impact of concussions is brilliant. Isaiah is a character with a troubled past who has been able to turn things around through his participation in football, and watching as he determines whether he can maintain these positive changes without the sport is fascinating. The varied cast supporting characters work with Isaiah in an interesting way; they are all people Isaiah cares about, but they all seem somehow less important to him than football, with the exception of Grace.

There's just enough football descriptions to hold the interest of sports fans, who will hopefully use this book to think about their own health concerning head trauma. Like Greenwald's Game Changer, Lupica's Lone Stars, Korman's Pop, Northrop's Plunked or Weyn's Full Impact, Cracking the Bell considers the many facets of traumatic brain injury and its effect on young sports enthusiasts.
Report this review Comments (0) | Was this review helpful to you? 0 0

User reviews

There are no user reviews for this listing.
Already have an account? or Create an account
Powered by JReviews

FEATURED GIVEAWAYS

Latest Book Listings Added

Secondhand Dogs
 
5.0
 
0.0 (0)
A heartwarming—and heart-tugging—middle grade novel about love, loyalty, and what...
High School Musical: The Musical: The Series: The Road Trip
 
4.0
 
0.0 (0)
Join everyone's favorite Wildcats from the Disney+ smash hit original...
I'll Meet You in Your Dreams
 
5.0
 
0.0 (0)
A heartwarming text honoring the ever-evolving relationship of a parent...
Colors of Habitats
 
4.0
 
0.0 (0)
The brand-new sequel to a well-reviewed bestseller that has been...
Noble Thief (Fantasy and Fairytales Book 6)
 
0.0
 
0.0 (0)
A prince of two kingdoms. A woman fighting against the...
10 Truths and a Dare
 
3.7
 
0.0 (0)
It's Senior Party Week, that magical in-between time after classes...
All These Bodies
 
0.0
 
0.0 (0)
Sixteen bloodless bodies. Two teenagers. One impossible explanation. ...
The Beautiful Ones
 
4.0
 
0.0 (0)
They are the Beautiful Ones, Loisail’s most notable socialites, and...
I Am the Shark
 
4.7
 
0.0 (0)
What makes the great white shark (one of) the greatest...
Made in Korea
 
4.7
 
0.0 (0)
Frankly in Love meets Shark Tank in this feel-good romantic...
Take Me Home Tonight
 
3.0
 
0.0 (0)
Ferris Bueller’s Day Off meets Nick and Nora’s Infinite...
The People We Choose
 
3.3
 
5.0 (1)
When 17-year-old Calliope meets her new neighbor Max, their...
Hurricane Summer
 
4.3
 
0.0 (0)
In this sweeping debut, Asha Bromfield takes readers to...
Slingshot
 
4.7
 
0.0 (0)
An exciting debut contemporary young adult novel perfect for...
The Keeper of Night
 
0.0
 
5.0 (1)
Death is her destiny. Half...
The Girls are Never Gone
 
0.0
 
0.0 (0)
The Conjuring meets Sadie when seventeen-year-old podcaster Dare takes an...

Latest Member Reviews

The Promised Prince
 
4.3
"When Renna goes swimming in a pond, she never expects to meet a boy named Trev in the most unladylike..."
Moon & Shadow: A tale of Liamec (Tales of Liamec Book 1)
 
4.3
"Overall, This book was different from anything I've read in a while. It was more like a folktale which was..."
The Raven and the Dove
 
5.0
"I've honestly had my eye on this book for a while, and finally decided to pick it up. As the..."
Fate Calling
 
5.0
"Fate Calling by Lindsay Grace is a beautifully written fae fantasy about a young human girl named Aislinn and a..."
Reign of Secrets
 
3.8
"What worked: The magical aspect of this book had me turning pages quickly. It was easy to read and..."
The Lightbringer: Through the Elder Stone
 
5.0
"The Lightbringer plays on that classic trope of light vs dark, but in a fresh way with unheard of magical..."
Fate Calling
 
5.0
"When Aislinn and Catriona are taken into the fae realm, their fate falls into the hands of a broody prince/rightful..."
With Shield and Ink and Bone
 
4.8
"The story: A Viking, Liv has earned her shield and is set to take her place as a shield..."
With Shield and Ink and Bone
 
4.5
"For those who can't get enough of Vikings, Norse Mythology, and kick-butt female leads, this one is for you. ..."
The First Holidays
 
5.0
"This short story is perfect for people who loved The Last Summer and for those excited for The Final Chance...."
My Best Friend Prince Charming
 
4.5
"‘My Best Friend Prince Charming’ by Cindy Ray Hale tells the story of Ryker and Shannon, two best friends who..."
The Fire in the Glass
 
4.7
"Lily can see the future and when she sees her friend killed, she tries to save her. Lily is an..."
Anchored
 
5.0
"Unlike anything I've read before. The Story: Alora is of two worlds. During her..."
The Curse of Jenny Greene
 
5.0
"I should start by saying The Curse of Jenny Greene is far from my normal genre preferences. I’m not usually..."
Emmie and the Tudor Queen
 
4.5
"This sequel resolved a lot of questions I had that weren’t answered in the first book like where did the..."
The Reclaimed Kingdom (The Syphon Series, Book 1)
 
5.0
"I’m a new fan of Dana Claire as I recently read “The Connection” and loved it. While I eagerly..."
Sleeping Beauty's Spindle
 
4.0
"Briar Rose hasn't had any easy life. After losing her parents, she's struggling to keep her siblings together as a..."
The First Holidays
 
5.0
"A sweet and perfect novella to go with this series. The Story: Four best..."
The Connection
 
4.8
"I’ll cut to the chase before I delve into a more detailed review; I loved this book! I binge-read The..."
The Parkour Club
 
5.0
" The Parkour Club is a rollicking good read! Bronte’s journey to find her place in the world..."