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Contemporary Realistic Fiction, Early/Young Readers, MAUD HART LOVELACE NOMINEE, Middle Grade Readers

QUARTERBACK SEASON by Fred Bowen…Division I Lovelace Nominee 2013-14



Clearly, the book is attempting to show the importance of and accessibility of journal writing/writing prompts and assignments.  Matt’s teacher emails him her reactions to his work and gives him tips on ways to improve. First, if you know nothing about football don’t read this story, as it will probably bore you:  there’s an over-abundance of football jargon, terms and long-winded play descriptions.  As stated earlier, I AM a football fan and DO understand everything that is said in the journal entries; factually accurate, however, does not make for interesting reading on its own.  The descriptions are boring and monotonous.  There is no genuine middle school voice to any of the football entries.

The emails to Matt from his teacher are equally boring and disingenuous.  I don’t believe for one minute that her narration is anything but a plot technique to allow the author to disgorge his writing advice (which is accurate). There is zero character involved.

I am unequivocally disappointed in this book and do not recommend Quarterback Season–whether you are a football fan or not.  If you want to read a REALLY interesting football-themed story that is well-plotted, interesting, character-driven and rife with football language and technique read Football Genius by former NFL player Tim Green. (He has several books in this series and his writing is tight, genuine and knowledgeable.)


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