One Last Shot

John David Anderson. Walden Pond, $16.99 (336p) ISBN 978-0-06-264392-6
Malcolm Greeley, 12, feels bad about disliking the sports that his father adores. So when he shows some flair for miniature golf and his dad jumps on it, finding Malcolm a coach and enrolling him in a league complete with tournaments, Malcolm goes along. Pleasing his father feels good, but it also causes further friction between his parents, who already fight a lot. Then there are the voices Malcolm hears: the one he’s named Aleck, who says things Malcolm would never dare utter aloud, and the one that has him believing in his worst fears and insecurities. Countering that voice is Malcolm’s warm relationship with his golf coach, Frank, as well as his new friendship with Lex, a girl he meets at the mini golf course. Chapters opening with golf tips intersperse the big tournament with the events leading up to it. Malcolm’s desire to get along with his dad without upsetting his mother is well wrought, as are his anxieties and fears, expressed through the voices he hears. Light moments, such as Frank’s cheerfully nutty stories, balance Anderson’s (Finding Orion) serious themes, as does Malcolm’s sympathetic and open narration. Ages 8–12. (May)
Reviewed on : 05/13/2020
Release date: 05/01/2020
Genre: Children's
Ebook - 336 pages - 978-0-06-264394-0
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Audio book sample courtesy of HarperAudio
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