downloadFrom Newbery Medalist Cynthia Kadohata comes a brilliantly realized sports novel about a hockey player who must discover who he is without the sport that defines him.

Hockey is Conor’s life. His whole life. He’ll say it himself, he’s a hockey beast. It’s his dad’s whole life too—and Conor is sure that’s why his stepmom, Jenny, left. There are very few things Conor and his dad love more than the game, and one of those things is their Doberman, Sinbad. When Sinbad is diagnosed with cancer, Conor chooses to put his hockey lessons and practices on hold so they can pay for Sinbad’s chemotherapy.

But without hockey to distract him, Conor begins to notice more. Like his dad’s crying bouts, and his friend’s difficult family life. And then Conor notices one more thing: Without hockey, the one thing that makes him feel special, is he really special at all?

This book will be published on February 6, 2018.

Thank you Edelweiss and Atheneum/Caitlyn Doughty Books for sending this book to me. So before I read this I didn’t know anything about hockey, but let’s be honest, I still don’t know anything about hockey, and that was okay. This book focuses on hockey but it also focuses on family, friends, and spending time with the people that you care about. So this book had a lot of important messages that kids need to learn. So, I really enjoyed this book but I didn’t like it as much as I think I could’ve read on to find out why.

The characters in this book were very deep and realistic. They acted like normal 5th or 6th grade boys. I could understand their train of thought and how they interacted with each other. There was lots of character development which I loved because I always love character development. The main character needed to learn more about himself and how he reacted to the world. I loved it quite a bit.

Sinbad, the dog, was awesome. I was impressed with how strong and brave he was. He didn’t have to be that strong and brave yet he chose to be. If I was going through chemotherapy I would have been way more depressed then that dog. And the way that Sinbad was treated by his family was top notch. Everyone cared about that dog and even though I like cats better then dogs I still liked Sinbad. I loved this dog quite a lot. 

The plot sort of confused me because it talked about hockey and I don’t really understand hockey. I have never played and I never want to play. The plot didn’t just talk about hockey though, it also talked about family, cancer, and friends. I loved how deep this story went. This book will teach kids that it’s okay to be different. Sometimes I couldn’t connect to the characters and events in this book. It may be because of my lifestyle and how I was raised, but it might also mean that some events were not as realistic as they could’ve been. Who knows? Well, what I’m trying to say is that the plot could have been better, in my eyes.

The setting was okay. It could have been worse. That might be the theme of this review. Everything could’ve been worse except for the characters. But that means that everything could have been better as well. I enjoyed reading this book quite a lot. It gave a different perspective on life. The setting was pretty descriptive and realistic. I enjoyed listening to Conor’s life and thoughts. It was satisfying in a way. I know I rambled a lot in this review but I did really enjoy this book. 

Once again, sorry for rambling. I really enjoyed this book, I just think that it could have been way better. Please remember to fill out my survey. You can find the link on my about page. Thanks for Reading!!!! Have a Great Day!!!! -Annalee and Buttons

Book Rating: th (52)