by David Klass & Perri Klass
Kendall is football town, and Jerry Downing is the high school's star quarterback, working to redeem himself after he nearly killed a girl in a drunk driving accident last year. Carla Jenson, lead reporter for the school newspaper's sports section, has recruited Jerry to co-author a blog chronicling the season from each of their perspectives. When Jerry's best friend on the team takes a hit too hard and gets hurt, Carla wonders publicly if injury in the game comes at too high a cost in a player's life—but not everyone in Kendall wants to hear it... David Klass and Perri Klass's Second Impact is an action-packed story will resonate with readers who have been following recent news stories are football injuries.
Publisher: MacMillan Children's Publishing
Publication Date: August 6, 2013
This book is told from two perspectives, the high school football quarterback and the star writer of the school paper. It is told completely in the form of blog posts, which is intriguing as a concept, but I found it to be a bit awkward at times, particularly when they were describing encounters that were too personal or too detailed to write on a school blog. I really liked the storyline of the problem with football injuries and the pressure to play while injured, but I would have liked to experience some of the scenes with the characters. A case of show, not tell, I guess.
The book touches upon a debate that has been in the media quite a bit lately, not just in regards to football but in all contact sports. The more we learn about brain injuries, the more difficult it is to continue to support the way children's sports are run. Writing a story about how this debate plays out in one school, in one town, is a great way to bring the subject down to a more personal level, rather than keeping it an abstract issue that nobody really takes too seriously. I also liked that both main characters were athletes, and that they were both stubborn in their own way. The issue was interesting, but I feel like it was told in a bit of an impersonal manner. I don't have anything against this format, but for some reason it kept me at arm's length from really being able to care about these characters in a personal way. The style was probably the biggest barrier for me to really fall in love with this book.
Rating: Worth a Look
The story is timely and there are some interesting issues broached in the book. the back and forth blog posts might not be as distracting to someone else as it was for me.
I was provided a complimentary copy of this title by NetGalley & the publisher in return for an honest review.