Jordan Sonnenblick is one of my favorite authors for young adult fiction. He has some trademarks to his style that make his books so brilliant. Sonnenblick’s voice is spot-on and his dialogue is completely in-tune with popular culture. He isn’t afraid to tackle serious issues in his books, but he keeps it real and gets the reader through it with abundant humor. He brings emotional, social, and other issues into the narrative, but the reader almost doesn’t realize it as they are swept along by the characters.
In Curveball: The Year I Lost My Grip Sonnenblick delivers yet again on all the fronts. Humor, dialogue, characters, real problems, personal victories–it is all there. He has done his research and the authenticity shows. I could gush, but rather than spoil it I will just say, “Read it!”
If you have a teenage male reader between the ages of 12-16, I suggest introducing them to Sonnenblick. You will be so glad you did!
Other recommended titles by Sonneblick: Drums, Girls, and Dangerous Pie and After Ever After.
Profanity/Language: 13 religious exclamations; 2 mild obscenities; 1 religious profanity.
Violence/Gore: Students dissect a pig in class and there is some brief description and they joke around about some of it.
Sex/Nudity: Dialogue references “horny”, “hot babes”, “jump bones”, “hot/hotness”, etc.; vague/innocuous reference to fooling around; characters think other characters are cute/attractive; report of a boy kissing a girl when he was in 2nd grade; figurative reference to “a stack of dirty magazines”; reference to female athletes always wearing skimpy spandex; characters kiss on a few different occasions (no descriptions); girl adjusts her bra strap; photographer mentions he was the wedding photographer for the first legal gay marriage in the state.
Mature Subject Matter:
Alzheimer’s Disease, Chronic injuries.
Alcohol / Drug Use:
Report of characters (HS freshmen) attending a party and drinking fruit punch that has been spiked. Characters have a hangover the next day.