Hockey Agony by Donna M. McDine


Hockey Agony by Donna M. McDine displays the importance of honesty and integrity.

In this sports-themed chapter book for tweens, Larry is disappointed that his recent injury has sidelined him from the big game. His coach asking him to be time keeper alongside a member of the opposing team is little consolation. When one of his teammates asks him to cheat, Larry needs to decide if honesty can beat out his bad attitude and habit of bending the rules.

As someone who writes message-driven fiction, I always enjoy a book where a reader has a take away they can ponder long after they finish. Such is the case with Hockey Agony. McDine created a character whose bad attitude and habit of bending the rules finally puts him at odds with doing the right thing. Peer pressure is huge at this age, so the author taps into that dilemma and helps tweens realize honesty and integrity are essential to making us successful in life.

Julie Hammond provided the artwork for Hockey Agony. She has a perfect style to complement this story. I also enjoyed the many background details that I felt relayed the message of the story in a subtle way.

While this award-winning book is sure to be popular with hockey players everywhere, Larry’s story is a great read for any tween looking for a bit of excitement and characters they can easily relate to.

Highly recommended!

Rating: 🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂

Age Range: 9 – 12 years
Paperback: 20 pages
Publisher: Guardian Angel Publishing, Inc; large type edition edition (March 15, 2013)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 161633360X
ISBN-13: 978-1616333607

I received a free digital copy of this book from the author through Pump Up Your Book. This review contains my honest opinions, which I have not been compensated for in any way.


A Necklace for Jiggsy by Kit Grady

 Jiggsy has lived a hard life as a junk yard dog. All he has is his beloved pillow. He has to fight for everything else. Then one day, he discovers a special necklace that he believes will change his life. Jiggsy soon learns the importance of doing the right thing.

A Necklace for Jiggsy by Kit Grady is a sweet story that teaches youngsters about honesty. By using a dog instead of a human for this type of story, author and illustrator Grady is able to share an important message with readers in a non-threatening way. That they are able to witness Jiggsy getting rewarded for his honesty is such an important thing. Grady knows how to tell a story, capturing the conflict and resolution well.

I’ve seen a couple of the other books she’s illustrated (The Sister Exchange and Humberto, the Bookworm Hamster), but I think A Necklace for Jiggsy might be my favorite so far. Right down to the whiskers on Jiggsy’s face, the details and bright colors draw the reader in.

I’m eager to see what Grady comes up with next.

Rating:  🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂

  • Publisher: Guardian Angel Publishing, Inc
  • ISBN-10: 1616330910
  • ISBN-13: 978-1616330910
  • SRP:  $10.95

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