The Resource Game changers, Mike Lupica

Game changers, Mike Lupica

Label
Game changers
Title
Game changers
Statement of responsibility
Mike Lupica
Creator
Author
Subject
Genre
Language
eng
Summary
When the coach's son, Shawn O'Brien, is chosen to play quarterback, eleven-year-old Ben McBain is not surprised--but when he tries to be a good teammate and help the inconsistent Shawn, he is startled to learn that his new friend does not really want the position
Member of
Storyline
Writing style
Review
  • Grades 5-7 Though barely big enough to qualify for the Pop Warner League, 11-year-old Ben McBain knows he is a better quarterback than the coach’s son, Shawn. Still, he’ll willingly play any position because he loves football. At his mother’s suggestion, he tries to befriend the arrogant, mistake-prone Shawn. Then the team loses their first two games. Down 20–0 at halftime in the third effort, the coach inserts Ben at quarterback, and the team begins to click and win. The amazing turnaround is predictable, but game descriptions create tension, as do the evolving personal relationships. Although idealized, primary figures are fully believable with distinct personalities. Even the female characters display intelligence and insight, a rarity in male sports fiction. A first-rate, inspiring football story, this will leave fans with an understanding that not all teamwork occurs on the gridiron. -- Perkins, Linda (Reviewed 09-01-2012) (Booklist, vol 109, number 1)
  • Gr 4 – 7 — Ben McBain, 11, knows that he has what it takes to be a great quarterback, although he can't convince his coaches to see beyond his small stature. So he's not surprised when Coach O'Brien tells the team that his own son, Shawn, will get the position. Outwardly, Shawn has it all-the size, the arm, the speed. But he doesn't have a deep love for the game, and, when plays don't go perfectly, he spirals out of control. Determined to make the season the best it can be regardless of the position he plays, Ben tries to befriend the temperamental boy. Shawn slowly opens up about the pressure he feels from being coached by his father, a retired NFL player, and how he can't relax and enjoy the moment. When the team loses the first two games of the season and Coach O'Brien puts Ben in as quarterback halfway through the third game, the Rams go on to win. This is the start of a turnaround for the team, and further wins put the championship back in their sights. But as their team does better, Shawn retreats into sullenness and wants nothing to do with Ben. While the ending of this engaging story is predictable, Lupica has a great ear for dialogue, and even the minor characters are fully developed. The tone is inspiring without crossing into didacticism, and there is plenty of football action throughout.—Kim Dare, Fairfax County Public Schools, VA --Kim Dare (Reviewed January 1, 2013) (School Library Journal, vol 59, issue 1, p116)
  • In this series opener, Lupica offers another sports hero who must prove himself to coaches who can’t see beyond his short stature. Ben McBain’s father played college football with Doug Flutie, who at 5-ft.-9-in. was the smallest player ever to win the Heisman. Ben has inherited his father’s athleticism but, unfortunately, his petite mother’s build: at age 11, he hasn’t yet cracked five feet. He’s also got the coach’s son, Shawn, filling the spot he wants: quarterback. When Shawn chokes under pressure during the first two games, Ben, an uncommonly mature tween with an encyclopedic knowledge of famous moments in gridiron history, is torn between helping a teammate and hoping he’ll be called on to replace him. The contemporary setting (kids carry cellphones) has a 1950s feel: Ben’s mother knows nothing about sports, is home whenever Ben returns from school, and is always available to make lunch or brownies for Ben and his pals. The on-field action is well described right up through the formulaic ending, which finds Ben in the Flutie role during the championship game. Ages 7–11. Agent: Esther Newberg, ICM. (May) --Staff (Reviewed April 16, 2012) (Publishers Weekly, vol 259, issue 16, p)
  • Ben's love of football forces him to overcome his disappointment at losing the role of starting quarterback to the coach's son. Ben McBain may not be the biggest player on his Pop Warner football team, but he has the greatest desire to win. Ben idolizes former NFL quarterback Doug Flutie, who was considered to be too small for the position but who played bigger than his height. He fights bitterness at being overlooked for his dream position, both due to his size and because his coach has determined that his own son, Shawn, will quarterback the team. Coach O'Brien, a former professional player, is set on his son's duplicating his path, not realizing the pressure Shawn feels. Shawn's response makes him a terrible teammate and threatens to turn the group of talented players into losers. Ben reaches out to Shawn, trying to save their season, but just when he thinks he is making progress, one of Coach O'Brien's game decisions causes a rift between the players. This action-packed story not only delivers plenty of good football plays, but also explores the consequences of parents living vicariously through their children. Ben is lucky: His father, while encouraging, is more low-key. Ben is a strong character, surrounded by a great group of sidekicks. Readers who, like Ben, live and breathe football, will enjoy. (Fiction. 7-11)(Kirkus Reviews, May 1, 2012)
http://library.link/vocab/ext/novelist/bookUI
10097298
Cataloging source
NJQ/DLC
http://library.link/vocab/creatorName
Lupica, Mike
Dewey number
  • [Fic]
  • 813.54
Index
no index present
LC call number
PZ7.L97914
LC item number
Gam 2012
Literary form
fiction
http://library.link/vocab/ext/novelist/minGradeLevel
  • 4
  • 7
http://library.link/vocab/resourcePreferred
True
Series statement
Game changers
Series volume
#1
http://library.link/vocab/subjectName
  • Football stories
  • Quarterbacking (Football)
  • Teamwork (Sports)
  • Friendship
  • Fathers and sons
  • Coaching (Athletics)
  • Football
  • Teamwork (Sports)
  • Friendship
  • Fathers and sons
  • Coaching (Athletics)
Target audience
juvenile
Label
Game changers, Mike Lupica
Instantiates
Publication
Dimensions
22 cm.
Edition
1st ed.
Extent
207 p.
Isbn
9780545381826
Lccn
2011047874
System control number
  • (OCoLC)ocn755699838
  • (OCoLC)755699838
  • 239260
Label
Game changers, Mike Lupica
Publication
Dimensions
22 cm.
Edition
1st ed.
Extent
207 p.
Isbn
9780545381826
Lccn
2011047874
System control number
  • (OCoLC)ocn755699838
  • (OCoLC)755699838
  • 239260

Library Locations

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      34.220596 -84.131772
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      34.11878 -84.156553
    • Hampton Park LibraryBorrow it
      5345 Settingdown Road, Cumming, GA, 30041, US
      34.305256 -84.067603
    • Post Road LibraryBorrow it
      5010 Post Road, Cumming, GA, 30040, US
      34.205256 -84.220792
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