June 27, 2009

Airball: My LIfe in Briefs - by L. D. Harkrader

What team in their right mind would play an entire season in nothing but their underwear?  This group of seventh-graders had something to prove, and they did it in boxers and briefs, turning their lousy record into an undefeated district championship.  Was it the great coaching? The kids' natural ability?  Or was it that when you take off your clothes and go in front of the crowd, you've got nothing left to lose?

This is a very nice story about Kirby, a kid who stinks at basketball, but wants to join the team to find out who his father is (makes sense once you start reading).  It's funny writing too, kind of  like Regular Guy by Sarah Weeks, but with a sports theme.  It's kind of like Travel Team because a bunch of losers end up improving at basketball, but this book is shorter and has less actual basketball action.  That's one thing I would change about the book: Add more on-court action!  Otherwise, it has a good plot, interesting characters, a bit of mystery, scary cafeteria food, and a happy, surprising ending.  If you like basketball or sports in general, funny school stories, or realistic fiction with happy endings, give this a try.

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