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Game Changers: Book 1 Hardcover – May 8, 2012
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From School Library Journal
"Ben is a strong character, surrounded by a great group of sidekicks. Readers who, like Ben, live and breathe football, will enjoy." -Kirkus Reviews
"Lupica's football action engages, and his delineation of the athlete's thought process and emotional highs and lows of competition feels visceral and real." --Kirkus (Review of Million Dollar Throw)
"Lupica is at his best when he puts the reader right in the center of the action..." --Booklist (Review of Summer Ball)
Top Customer Reviews
Once I began reading the book, I immediately had concerns about the main characters being ten-years-old. Those concerns were put to rest, however, when it became apparent that Lupica wrote them to sound far older. There were many times I felt as though they were college players, not pee-wee league. On the one hand, this bothered me to a certain extent. On the other hand, though, I reminded myself that the book wasn't written for a thirty-five-year-old, it was written fro young adults and children. Bearing this in mind, I think my students will better relate to it because the characters sound older than their dictated age.
I'd always heard Lupica wrote sports well. Now I know this to be true. His terminology is accurate and he achieved authentic pacing in regards to the games played. My athletes will really love that he got those things right.
Finally, I greatly appreciated the positive messages delivered within the book. Lupica makes a point to reinforce the importance of good sportsmanship, team chemistry, doing the right thing, and having loving relationships with family.
Though the dialogue of the characters seemed too sophisticated for the ages, I thought this book overall succeeded on many levels. I've already put it into the hands of a football player in my class and can't wait to get his take on it.
Game Changers revolves around the sport of football. It is not too difficult of a reading level. And the subject matter is sure to appeal to boys (or girls) who enjoy the sport. Mike Lupica writes knowledgeably about the sport. The book is clean and appropriate for the grade level. As is often the case in Mike Lupica books, there is a valuable lesson to be learned. And the story holds the interest of reluctant readers who are sports fans.
Like Heat, Game Changers introduces us to a hero so likable, that you find yourself in his corner early in the book. Ben McBain is a born quarterback: he loves football, he's understands the game, sees the entire field when he plays, he's quick, he's strong, and he brings his teammates together. Unfortunately, Ben is also much smaller than the usual quarterback, which means that few of the coaches or grownups see him as a natural for that position. Instead of whining about his luck, Ben plays smarter and he works harder than everyone else. Fortunately, he lives right next to a field which he and his three closest friends have dubbed McBain Field for all the hours they've spent there over the years.
The book opens with a new football season starting. Ben McBain is better than ever and he's excited for tryouts. Their new coach O'Brien is a superstar in his own right - he played for the NFL and cares about the kids. Unfortunately for Ben, the coach's son Shawn O'Brien is trying out for quarterback too.Read more ›
I am not a big sports fan, so reading sports-based novels has never been a favorite pastime for me. However, I must admit that I enjoyed Game Changers, which is intended to be the first of a new series for middle grade readers. It extols the benefits of good friendships among young people, encourages them to do their best with a positive attitude, and illustrates good moral qualities. For example, there is a conversation between Ben and Shawn about the dangers of lying, and I like the way the fact that Ben and his family attend church is mentioned. The euphemistic "heck" is used a few times, and some current slang terms which will seriously date the book for future generations are found, but many of the obnoxious features of much modern youth literature are absent, so most parents will find it a wholesome read for their sports-minded tweens with little that is objectionable. The next book in the series, Game Changers Book 2: Play Makers, is due out in February of 2013.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
I I I I I'm going after the rails on a crazy traffic n I'm going after the rails on a crazy train I do now t know if this is 20 words thouuuuughhhhhh decent bookPublished 2 months ago by Amazon Customer
I am missing the football edition of Game Changers book 1. I received the other two books in the box but it was easy to see that one could have either fallen out or was pulled out... Read morePublished 4 months ago by Tamara Bashenko
Crazy good. I love football and the book was great
5 star rating it was the best football story I know.
Great book. Written in a captivating way. My 11 year old couldn't put it down. Lupica is a gifted writer that can make the sports world come alive on the pages. Read morePublished 13 months ago by Hoozhur