Team Players

By: Mike Lupica

Sarah is amazing at softball, though her Asperger’s makes socializing difficult. Cassie struggles to convince the team that accommodating Sarah is worth the trouble.

ISBN: 9781481410076

JLG Release: Sep 2018


Series: Home Team
Sensitive Areas: Discrimination: Disability
Topics: Softball , Interpersonal relations , Asperger’s syndrome , Autism , Friendship , Sports

$16.30  Member Price


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Praise & Reviews

Starred or favorable reviews have been received from these periodicals:

Kirkus Reviews, School Library Journal

School Library Journal

It’s the summer after middle school and Cassie Bennett is gearing up for the all-star softball season. Cassie is a strong all-around athlete, having made waves as a standout on the boys’ basketball team. Now she’s looking forward to leading her Walton Red Sox through another undefeated season and competing for a chance to play for It’s the summer after middle school and Cassie Bennett is gearing up for the all-star softball season. Cassie is a strong all-around athlete, having made waves as a standout on the boys’ basketball team. Now she’s looking forward to leading her Walton Red Sox through another undefeated season and competing for a chance to play for a regional championship in Fenway Park. The biggest challenge comes from the rupture of her friend group with the arrival of a new player, Sarah Milligan, who has Asperger’s Syndrome. While several of the girls reject Sarah because her disability makes them uncomfortable, Cassie takes her on as someone to “fix.” Alongside the softball story is a complementary one about Cassie’s friends, Jack, Teddy, and Gus, and the plight of their baseball team after the removal of their overbearing coach and the related tension with his high-strung son, Sam. Through an eventful summer both on and off the field, Cassie and the others learn much about themselves and what kind of commitment it takes to maintain both a friendship and a team, while Cassie gets an insightful lesson from Sarah’s mom about the difference between sympathy and empathy. Lupica describes game play with appropriate detail that should please fans but avoids letting the social plot get lost in the weeds. Periodic explorations into the psychology of pitching will be intriguing even to readers not interested in the game. VERDICT A compelling read with important lessons, Lupica’s latest is highly recommended for libraries serving middle graders.—Bob Hassett, Luther Jackson Middle School, Falls Church, VA

Book Details

ISBN

9781481410076

First Release

September 2018

Genre

Fic

Dewey Classification

F

Trim Size

8 1/4" x 5 1/2"

Page Count

304

Accelerated Reader

Level 4.9; Points: 8;

Scholastic Reading Counts

Level 4.7; Points: 13;

Lexile

Level 780L

Format

Print Book

Edition

Hardcover edition

Publisher

Simon & Schuster

Potentially Sensitive Areas

Discrimination: Disability

Topics

Softball, Interpersonal relations, Asperger’s syndrome, Autism, Friendship, Sports,

Standard MARC Record

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Cover Art

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