By Carl Deuker
(Houghton Mifflin Books for Children, Hardcover, 9780395979365, 224pp.)
Publication Date: April 2000
Nick Abbott and Trent Dawson have nothing in common but basketball. Or so it seems. But as the basketball season progresses, their lives become unexpectedly intertwined. In this story of an unlikely bond, award-winning author Carl Deuker explores that dark and confusing place between loneliness and friendship, between faithfulness and betrayal. Filled with gripping game play, the novel will leave readers wondering how much they themselves would reach out to a kid like Trent.
Carl Deuker participated in several sports as a boy. He was good enough to make most teams, but not quite good enough to play much. He describes himself as a classic second-stringer. "I was too slow and too short for basketball; I was too small for football, a little too chicken to hang in there against the best fastballs. So, by my senior year the only sport I was still playing was golf." Carl still loves playing golf early on Sunday mornings at Jefferson Park in Seattle, the course on which Fred Couples learned to play. His handicap at present is 13. Combining his enthusiasm for both writing and athletics, Carl has created many exciting, award-winning novels for young adults. He currently lives in Seattle, Washington, with his wife and daughter.
"Once again Deuker strikes a happy balance between issues and action, examining topics such as parental pressure and the edgy realtionship between play makers and their less gifted teammates while transporting his readers right into the bleachers with vivid play-by-plays." The Bulletin (3/00) The Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books
"The author perfectly captures the swirl of ideas in the adolescent mind. . . . Deuker delivers a story that features rounded characters dealing with real problems, set against the backdrop of a varsity basketball season. . . .This is an excellent novel SLJ, starred review School Library Journal, Starred
"Deuker adds further luster to his reputation for top-flight sportswriting matched to uncommonly perceptive coming-of-age stories." Kirkus Reviews Kirkus Reviews