Jordan Woods is in her senior year at Hundred Oaks High in Franklin, Tennessee. She is unusual not only in that she tops six feet in height, but she is also the captain and quarterback of the champion high school football team. All her good friends, including her best friend, Sam Henry, are her male teammates.
Her whole life revolves around football. Her father, Donovan Woods, is the starting quarterback for the Tennessee Titans. Her brother Mike plays for the University of Tennessee. Jordan aspires more than anything to play football for Alabama, and Alabama actually seems interested in recruiting her.
Then a new “hot” transfer student shows up, Tyler “Ty” Green. He is a quarterback himself from the previous year’s Texas state championship team. Suddenly Jordan starts to fumble, as everything in her world turns upside down.
Discussion: The characters are very likable in this book, and I loved the portrayal of the relationships among Jordan and her male teammates. I also loved how the boys were protective of Jordan not as a female so much as a female trying to succeed in a male role.
There were some laugh-out-loud moments in the book whenever it focused on what these kids were learning (or not learning, as the case may be) in school. For example, there is a very funny ongoing scenario with Jordan and Sam having to care for a fake baby for home ec class. And when Jordan and her teammate J.J. do crosswords together, they are always stumped: they can’t figure out “a four-letter word for a past Russian leader”, and as the answer to “a four-letter word for a soothing plant” they guess “weed.”
Evaluation: This cute book is very predictable in some ways, and I would have called it “tween” instead of “YA” except for the fact that sex does occur. However, it is so UN-described that it is about as innocuous as it could be and still be “sex.” This would make a great mother-daughter combo read –plenty of issues arise that are good for discussion about gender roles, treatment of girls, parental expectations, and of course, sex.
Published by Sourcebooks, Inc., 2011