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Soar Paperback – January 3, 2017
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From School Library Journal
Gr 4–6—Sports, friendship, tragedy, and a love connection are all wrapped up in one heartwarming, page-turning story. Jeremiah lives and breathes baseball and wants nothing more than to be a professional player, but when he learns that he suffers from a severe heart condition, his dreams are put on hold. Soon after he and his single father move to a town that is something of a baseball capital, the entire community is shaken by the death of a beloved school baseball player—and a town scandal that is revealed in the aftermath. Jeremiah finds himself coaching and bringing baseball back to the local middle school and ends up motivating the entire town. When he and his father are faced with having to leave their new town behind, Jeremiah has to deal with the possibility of also leaving his heart in the very place that helped to make it stronger. This coming-of-age tale features a boy who is courageous and witty; readers—baseball fans or otherwise—will cheer on Jeremiah and this team. VERDICT The latest middle grade novel from this award-winning author is triumphant and moving.—Nikitia Wilson, Convent of the Sacred Heart School Library, New York City --This text refers to the Audio CD edition.
Praise for Soar:
* "Jeremiah's voice is perfect: plucky, vulnerable, pragmatic, smart, and immensely endearing. Bauer masterfully manages the various plotlines. . . An outstanding, tender exploration of courage and the true nature of heroism and, for good measure, a fine homage to America's game, as well." —Kirkus Reviews, starred review
* "Bauer’s latest feel-good novel is distinguished by a largehearted warmth, its able characterizations, a page-turning plot, and winning humor." —Booklist, starred review
"Sports, friendship, tragedy, and a love connection are all wrapped up in one heartwarming, page-turning story. . . This coming-of-age tale features a boy who is courageous and witty; readers—baseball fans or otherwise—will cheer on Jeremiah and this team. The latest middle grade novel from this award-winning author is triumphant and moving." —School Library Journal
"Jeremiah's enthusiasm for baseball is infectious, and he plays a major role in rebuilding and coaching a team at the middle school while lifting the sagging spirits of community members. . . Readers will feel that Jeremiah's victories are well earned and deserved." —Publishers Weekly
"This is not the predictable baseball-as-metaphor-for-life offering it seems but rather a character study in resilience and a tender evocation of a father-son relationship. 'Tender,' however, is not code for 'slow' or 'dull'; Jeremiah is a wry and witty narrator, and his take-charge (but sensible) approach to life impels the story along at a brisk clip." —BCCB
Praise for Joan Bauer's Tell Me:
"Bauer establishes a multi-faceted plot combining crime drama with a modern coming of age story. Anna’s voice rings clear through first-person narration, allowing readers to sing, cry, and smell the flowers along with the protagonist. Short chapters and smart dialogue keep the pace moving. Ultimately, Bauer twists the widespread divorce issue into a lesson on empathy, inviting readers to keep their minds and eyes alert to worlds other than their own." —School Library Journal
"In this novel filled with comedy and drama. . . Bauer skillfully weaves subplots together as Rosemont citizens (and Anna's parents) rise to the challenge of solving the mystery." —Publishers Weekly
"There are numerous, valuable messages for readers here: pay attention, trust your instincts, and speak up; sometimes being brave is about small, uncertain steps that we take; and helping others helps us, too. Humor and hope are balanced throughout, making this a good recommendation for those who prefer a serious topic treated with a less heavy hand and a happy ending." —VOYA
"Bauer manages the difficult feat of folding the topic of human trafficking into a middle-grade novel about daily-life family and peer struggles; in fact, Anna’s conviction that the missing girl matters is part and parcel of her character throughout, as she similarly commits whole-heartedly to her acting efforts and beloved friends. . . Readers will appreciate the story for Bauer’s classic and relatable heroine who pursues her goal through adversity." —BCCB
"Bauer has done an exceptional job of informing young readers about human trafficking without being heavy-handed or speaking down to her audience." —LMC
Close to Famous: Winner of the ALA Schneider Family Book Award, Christopher Award, Judy Lopez Memorial Prize, An Amazon Top Ten Middle Grade Book, a YALSA/ALA Best Fiction for Young Adults pick; Hope Was Here: Newbery Honor Book, Christopher Award, ALA Notable Book; Rules of the Road: Los Angeles Times Book Prize, Golden Kite Award, ALA Notable Book, Best Book for Young Adults.
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Top Customer Reviews
moving to Hillcrest Ohio the town of baseball. But after some tragedies, its up to Jeremiah to get the town in shape.
Spoiler alert: at the end of the story, there is a very small part - I think it is only one sentence - about the fiancee not wanting the robot to be in the bedrooms. This was disappointing to me because it seemed to indicate that the fiancee was using the bedroom when she visited. This is tricky because now I can't recommend this title to teachers in religious schools. I have to admit that I was looking for these kinds of things while I read since I do recommend books regularly for teachers in religious schools. So if this minor part of the book bothers you, be aware.
Pros: “You’re weird…but I like you,” says one of Jeremiah’s teammates, perfectly capturing Jeremiah’s voice as he narrates this story. Quirky, humorous, and refusing to be kept down, Jeremiah gives the people of Hillcrest and the readers of Soar plenty to cheer about.
Cons: Occasionally Jeremiah seems a bit too wise and mature for a sixth-grader.