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Played Paperback – May 2, 2007

4.6 out of 5 stars 28 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From School Library Journal

Grade 9 Up–Ian Striver is challenged to prove himself worthy of joining his Detroit high school's elite fraternity. He has two weeks to make plain and unpopular Kylie fall for him and sleep with him. Although he feels uncomfortable, he turns on his charm and asks her out. Kylie has never had so much attention before; though her friends try to convince her that Ian is a player, she develops feelings for him. When she finally has sex with him and tells him how she feels, his deception is accidentally revealed in front of the entire school. Ian has to come to terms with the man he is becoming, and try to convince Kylie to trust him again. This look at high school fraternities is reminiscent of Sharon M. Draper's The Battle of Jericho (S & S, 2003), though the conclusion is not quite so extreme. Kylie is not popular, but she has true friendships. Ian may be popular, but he has sacrificed his integrity to be so, and he is unhappy. It isn't until his sister points out that he is turning out like his absentee father that he realizes he needs to change. Davidson's understanding of teen motivations and language is apparent here. Though the topic is nothing new, the author's voice and the urban setting make it fresh and relevant to teens.–Stephanie L. Petruso, Anne Arundel County Public Library, Odenton, MD
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

About the Author

Ebonymagazine wrote: "Dana Davidson speaks to teenagers in a truthful, urban voice..." She made her fiction debut withJason and Kyra,a love story thatBooklistsaid "...teens won't be able to stop reading." The winner of the 2001Newsweek/WDIV-TV Outstanding Teacher Award, Dana teaches high school in Detroit, and lives just outside the city with her family.
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Product Details

  • Age Range: 12 and up
  • Grade Level: 7 and up
  • Paperback: 240 pages
  • Publisher: Jump At The Sun; Reprint edition (May 1, 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0786836911
  • ISBN-13: 978-0786836918
  • Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 0.5 x 8.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 8 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (28 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,095,142 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
Having read Dana Davidson's "Jason And Kyra" I expected great things from her with "Played". I seem to be reading sophomore efforts from some of my favorite authors and luckily Dana Davidson does not disappoint.

Ian Striver is a popular junior at Cross High looking to become even more popular by joining "FBI", aka Freaky Boys Incorporated. I don't have to tell you what the club is about, you get that from the name. Ian's challenge is to find an unattractive girl and get her to sleep with him within a 3-week period. He has to have proof that she slept with him. In comes Kylie. Not popular at all with a hairstyle that she admits needs help, Kylie becomes the girl in Ian's challenge.

Over time, Ian gets to know Kylie and has to make a choice. Will he choose Kylie, the only girl with which he's truly felt like he could be himself? Or will he take the easy route of joining a group that will take away his individuality?

This story sounds like a typical young adult novel of how the characters handle peer pressure. The topic may be typical but the way Dana Davidson brings her characters to life is not. You relate to these characters and root for them to make sound choices which they don't always do, just like in life. For those who read "Jason And Kyra", those two characters make an extremely brief but powerful cameo that's an important thread to this overall story.

I like this book although I think some of the slang that the characters use is dated or just corny. This minor criticism is definitely not enough to stop me from reading Ms. Davidson's future works. Ms. Davidson's bio says that she's a high school teacher in Detroit. Hopefully all of her students read her works and probably give her ideas for characters. I highly recommend this novel to both teenagers and adults alike.
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Format: Hardcover
Kylie isn't one of those girls who turns heads when she walks down the hall at school. She isn't a girl who constantly gets asked out and fawned over, and she certainly isn't a girl who the popular crew at school would give the time of day. That is, until pigs seem to fly at a school dance and Ian Striver, one of the most popular and fine boys at school, asks her for a dance and her digits.

Tiny seeds of doubt are planted in the back of Kylie's mind, but her time with Ian is so special, comfortable, and real, she quickly pushes the doubt away despite stern warnings from her girls. Ian has his own struggles. He enjoys the time he spends with Kylie, but peer pressure takes hold of him, and his conscience just won't let him be.

PLAYED by Dana Davidson is an engrossing story of an ordinary girl in an extraordinary situation. Kylie and Ian's characters stand out and , as do many of the secondary characters. More importantly, though, PLAYED teaches youngsters important lessons about teen relationships and hardships, and the underlying theme of not judging a book by its cover is quite prevalent. Although the book's content may seem a little grown for tweens and younger teens, I thought the messages were important for high-schoolers and even adults.

Reviewed by CandaceK

of The RAWSISTAZ™ Reviewers
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Format: Hardcover
Dana Davidson, takes the quintessential teenage love story by storm and flips the script in a believable manner. How many of us know, remember or were the "not-quite-ugly" but "not-guaranteed-to-make-a-guy's-tongue-hang-out" girl in High School?

Dana tells the tale of initiation and unexpected love without over-the-top drama and leaves us not only with likeable main and secondary characters, but with a few messages.

- Beauty is in the eye of the beholder

- Be true to yourself

- Even the popular people have issues.

- Accountability for actions

A great read for this forty-year-old "teen" and more importantly an awesome read for an actual teenager.

This title would make a great group discussion book to segue into teenage girls' selfworth, self image, first times etc. and excellent for teenage boys' playa, playa types to teach accountability and the possible outcome of giving into peer pressure.
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Format: Hardcover
I read this book because I have a teenaged daughter that I also read Jason and Kyra with. I loved Jason and Kyra. Played was also well written, well crafted and told a very realistic story of teenagers trying to fit in and going through awful gyrations to do so. I couldn't understand why Kylie still decides that she still likes Ian, after he so betrays her trust. Such an act would be devastating to anyone at any age but especially to a teenager, who does not have a long history with him. My only critisism is that Kylie's reaction to the betrayal almost seems mild. This is also a story about forgiveness and redemption. I will definitely share this book with my daughter and we'll discuss it page by page. Although the sex scene is graphic and makes the book unsuitable for anybody under ninth grade, the book does give the lesson that virginity is important and should not be wasted. Ms. Davidson, even though this book will be very controversial, because you went 'there' it was an eyeopener for any parent who might be in denial that their children are thinking of going there. I think it would make a great discussion book for parents and children about personal integrity and sexual responsibility
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