Go Long! (Kickoff)

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Grade 4–8—Ronde and Tiki Barber are entering eighth grade and ready to defend their school's title as football division champs. Unfortunately, their beloved coach announces that he has accepted a job at the nearby high school. On top of that, their quarterback is dividing the team with his hotdogging antics and insults. The Barber twins are convinced that, if they can get the team to listen to their new coach, they can salvage the season. The authors are NFL players and know a thing or two about football. Unfortunately, this novel uses terminology that may be too complex for all but the most passionate fans of the game. A glossary is included, but a solid familiarity with terms and rules is still necessary or kids will be left behind. An adult sensibility prevails: a former teammate declares that a player is "just immature…. I was the same way in seventh grade." On the same note, in the midst of training, Tiki has an inner monologue about how lucky he is "in the mom department"—what 13-year-old thinks about that during football practice? This book will circulate based on the subject, the authors' popularity, and the snazzy cover. However, it will satisfy only the most avid football fans.—Laura Lutz, Queens Borough Public Library, NY
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