Wednesday, August 15, 2018

Book Review: Lucky Enough by Fred Bowen (2018)

Lucky Enough is another great read from Fred Bowen, who consistently writes engaging sports stories for the middle grade audience. As he does in his other books, here Bowen combines real sports trivia (this time about the superstitions of famous baseball players) with an engaging life lesson (it's better to work hard than to rely on luck!) starring a child athlete who has been inspired by an influential adult (in this case, it's Trey's deceased grandmother). Trey is a sympathetic character, and the reader both empathizes with his desire to follow certain rituals during baseball games and understands his need to put in a bit more effort to improve his game. Supporting characters are also appealing, include Trey's well-to-do Uncle Dave who checks in on him and his single mom from time to time, and the groundskeeper at the ball field, Mr. Kiley, who is involved in the search for Trey's lost good luck charm, and Trey's realization that it may not hold as much power as he thinks.

This is a book with appeal to a wide range of ages. Advanced readers in the lower elementary grades who need novel-length stories with age-appropriate content won't find anything offensive in this book, but kids as old as middle-school age can still relate to Trey and enjoy all the sports action, and the details of things like player stats and batting rosters. I've never read a book by Fred Bowen that I couldn't wholeheartedly recommend, and this book is no exception. I'm already eager to read whatever he writes next!

Tomorrow, I'll be posting my interview with Fred Bowen, in which we discuss the lessons in his books, how he names all of his characters, and when his next book will be available.

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