Kick Reviews

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Kick Reviews

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  • Used Book in Good Condition

For the very first time in his decades-long career writing for teens, acclaimed and beloved author Walter Dean Myers writes with a teen, Ross Workman.Kevin Johnson is a great kid and skilled soccer player. With attitude.Then he ends up in jail.Sergeant Brown is a tough cop and Kevin’s mentor. With attitude.If Kevin and Brown can learn to trust each other, they might be able to turn things around.Before it’s too late.

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May 22, 2016 at 12:20 am
5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars
An Enjoyable Read, February 19, 2011
Lauren (PA, USA) –

This review is from: Kick (Hardcover)
Fast paced and inspiring, Kick is a book that sure to become a favorite of many teens out there who love sport related reads with a touch of mystery.

Kick tells the story of Kevin Johnson and Sergeant Brown and the bond they began to form a unquie bond. Kevin is the typical young man. He loves soccer more than anything, and he’s a pretty good student as well as friend. Though, everything changes the night Kevin is arrested for taking a car without permission. Soon enough he lands an offense on his previously clean record, and the touch, sensible, and somewhat sweet Sergeant Brown enters Kevin’s life with hope that he’ll be able to get Kevin’s life back on track again. Little do they know that everything is soon to change yet again, that soon they will have a great friendship. But will it be able to take the heat of a possible future court date as well as the secrets and confessions that keep tumbling out about that fateful night? Only time and more pages can tell in this read that will leave Myers fans cheering for Kevin and Sergeant Brown every step of the way!

The best part of Kick is hands down the characters because both were likable and relatable. Kevin was the average teen boy, one that I’m sure boys and girls alike will have no problem relating to, and while Brown was tough on the edges on first, it was easy to see he was a softie at heart. One of the things I loved most about Sergeant Brown and Kevin was the friendship they began to form over the course of the book, because not only was it touching but inspiring as well to see Kevin began to look up to Brown as his mentor and step in father figure so to say.

While the execution of the premise were a bit average and predictable, I had an easy time falling into the story, because I enjoyed learning more about soccer, the lives of the characters, and the legal process with every page. Also, I felt both Myers and Workman did a great job of leading up to the big reveal of what happened that night as the book progressed because it had just the right amount of tension and suspense to keep me intrigued.

Lastly, the most inspiring aspect of this book would have to be the fact that Walter took Ross (a teen fan of his) on to write this novel with him after exchanging several emails. It was originally what got me interested in this book, and the final outcome was decent overall, because while Kick had its choppy parts at time because of the alternating perspectives, it was easy to see the talent Myers has and Workman is sure to accumulate plenty over time with his stories as well!

In all, Kick is a promising debut from this writing duo, and I look forward to reading more by each, especially if they will be writing together!

Grade: B

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May 22, 2016 at 12:43 am
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars
Sweet Story, August 1, 2013
PDXbibliophile (Portland, OR) –

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This review is from: Kick (Paperback)
Walter Dean Myers, the first author to receive the YA lit lifetime achievement award, probably understands teens better than most parenting experts. Kick also shows his understanding of the workings of the teen brain. The 13 year old protagonist is just trying to help a friend and keep a promise. His good intentions have him headed to court and possibly J.D.H. The voice of Kevin is written by a high school student who became friends with Myers via fan e-mails. Both writers created a sweet story with no bad guys, well intentioned yet flawed adults and lots of great soccer action. I hope Sergeant Brown shows up in future Myers novels mentoring other youths headed down a destructive path. Its short length makes Kick a good choice for reluctant readers.
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May 22, 2016 at 1:30 am
5.0 out of 5 stars
Can one impulsive action land Kevin Johnson in juvie?, January 22, 2014

This review is from: Kick (Paperback)
Thirteen year old Kevin lives in a middle class suburban town with his mother and Abuela. His father, a policeman, was killed recently in the line of duty. Kevin’s a good kid. In the throes of soccer season, he’s focused on helping his team qualify for the semi-finals and proving to his coach he has more than just star player potential. He’s never been in trouble. Until the night he’s pulled over on the side of the highway with his best friend, Christy, driving her dad’s car. When she begs him not to give anything up to the cops, Kevin keeps his mouth shut. It’s not until the next morning after he’s spent the night in jail, he finds out he’s a felon, facing charges of Grand Larceny and kidnapping. Sgt. Brown, a cop near retirement, agrees to participate in a new mentoring program for teens. A thirteen year old felon, though, is way more than he signed on for. But as soon as he meets Kevin, he can tell there’s something Kevin and Christy are hiding.

What really happened that night?

If Kevin and Sgt. Brown can trust each other, they might be able to figure it out and turn things around before it’s too late.

Walter Dean Myers has been writing young adult books for years, this one was a bit of a change for him as he teamed up with Ross Workman, a teenage fan, to co-write the book. The first few pages of the book include a selection of the emails exchanged between the pair, from the initial idea to write together right through to getting the news that it was going to be published. I found these a very endearing read particularly the advice given by Myers to Workman during the writing process.

The plot is fairly straight forward, the well-meaning cop trying to get a former colleague’s son back on the straight and narrow. The narration swaps between Kevin and Sgt. Brown with each chapter, I really liked this, it was nice getting to see situations from both of their perspectives. Alongside the main plot of Kevin facing the prospect of juvie and Sgt. Brown trying to help him improve his situation is the soccer plot following Kevin’s team’s efforts in the State Cup. The plots are fairly simple and for my taste the main plotline is resolved a little too simply. I found Kevin quite hard to engage with at times, I think however that this is the sign of him being well written. The decisions teenage boys make often puzzle me and Kevin was certainly no different. Overall I enjoyed this book and am quite inspired by the story of how it came to be.

-Mohammed Elnoiemey

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