Monday, June 11, 2012

Pinch Hit by Tim Green

OK, so Pinch Hit is one of those books that I probably would not have picked up and read on my own, but I won it at YA Reads for Teachers (And Other Adults) and the rules of winning are that you read and post.

So, I read it, and let me tell you I read it in May at the end of the school year with a million other things going wasn't really doing it for me. Frankly, I'm not sure if I do middle grade books for middle grade kids very well. But, I kept going Sam in one chapter and Trevor in another. I found that, if I stopped being 'adult' about it, I was beginning to enjoy the cliffhanger end to each chapter and then starting the next chapter up with the other character so a person might read 4 or 5 chapters before they realized it. Perfect for reluctant readers (OK, so I totally/all the way didn't stop being 'adult' about it).

This book is about Sam, an All-American baseball player and Trevor, a prissy (not because he wants to be, but because his mom makes him) Hollywood mega-star. Trevor wants to play real baseball more than anything and Sam wants his father's horror film script green-lighted (or, is that green-lit?). After Trevor realizes that he and Sam look about 99% identical, they, with the help of Trevor's female co-star, switch places. There are parts were things get a little hairy...Sam reads/Trevor does not, Sam knows Shakespeare/Trevor does not, Sam can switch it/Trevor...and so on, but for the most part the grown-ups don't get it. Things go rather well until the boys figure out that they are, in fact, real twins and Sam uses Trevor's star power to find their real mother.

Who can the boys trust? Will Trevor be good enough to fool the coach and scouts? Will Sam be able to act? These are all things that will keep kids on their toes and there's just enough sports to make it interesting and just enough romance to entice all kids to want to read it. I got hooked and got to the end wanting more, I'm pretty sure most kids will too.

This book is like the Prince and the Pauper meets The Whipping Boy, I think it would make a cute Disney movie starring a set of adorable twins...I guess the Sprouse twins from The Suite Life of Zach and Cody are too old aren't they?

4 Stars   

Teacher Advisories
Sex 0/5 
I think there's a kiss on the cheek...maybe...
Language 0/5 
Substance Abuses 0/5
Violence 1/5
A talent agent gets pretty nasty with Sam. Trevor and his mother have a verbal altercation. Sam gets bullied by a team-mate. Trevor as Sam retaliates. The bully gets what he deserves in the end and lessons are learned all around.

Touchy Subjects
Of course, this book couldn't work without lots of lying. The kids get found out and the truth does bring everyone closer because you know the parents were lying too when they didn't tell each of the boys that he had a brother.
Relationships with parents
When the boys switch places they begin to realize what they have. Trevor even begins to see that his parents do love him. It's too bad it took a switch to see that. Kids might see that their parents really are trying to do right by them.

How this book is used in the classroom
1] Independent Read option (not for honors students...reading level is too darned easy, unless, of course, they read it for their independent summer read and for that I have a guide...a guide I should post on this website...hmmm...)

No comments:

Post a Comment

Thanks for stopping by and sharing your thoughts with us!