Balzer & Bray/Harperteen, Hardcover, 9780061742286, 272pp.
Publication Date: August 25, 2009
When Marcus moves to a new town in the dead of summer, he doesn't know a soul. While practicing football for impending tryouts, he strikes up an unlikely friendship with an older man. Charlie is a charismatic prankster and the best football player Marcus has ever seen. He can't believe his good luck when he finds out that Charlie is actually Charlie Popovich, or "the King of Pop," as he had been nicknamed during his career as an NFL linebacker. But that's not all. There is a secret about Charlie that his family is desperate to hide.
When Marcus begins school, he meets the starting quarterback on the team: Troy Popovich. Right from the beginning, Marcus and Troy disagree about football, about Troy's ex-girlfriend, Alyssa, but most of all about what's good for Charlie. Marcus is betting that he knows what's best for the King of Pop. And he is willing to risk everything to help his friend.
“A brisk, heartfelt and timely novel.”
-New York Times Book Review
“Korman goes straight to the heart.”
-Kirkus Reviews (starred review)
“Fantastic…Perfectly captures the football experience.”
“Funny, poignant and full of football action, POP hits you hard and doesn’t let up.”
-Tim Green, author of the New York Times bestselling Football Genius and Football Champ