After baseball ( A Different Season ) and soccer ( Breakaway Run ), Klass has turned to wrestling. Ron, the self-proclaimed ``straightest guy'' in his high school, feels his civil rights are being threatened when he has to take a drug test in order to compete on the wrestling team. But when the test unexpectedly indicates the presence of drugs, he refuses to take another one, and sits out the season. Ron becomes increasingly bitter and angry when others don't understand or sympathize with his moral stand. He blames the father he never knewand won't talk aboutwho was killed in Vietnam when he was an infant. The mystery of why he failed the drug test is cleared up (the astute reader will have solved it long before), and Ron is allowed to wrestle again, but too late to qualify for a championship bout with Igor, his nemesis. Igor wins the champion's trophy, but won't go home until he's wrestled Ron. Once again, Klass creates a moving, emotionally involving story; readers will be cheering all the way through its excitingif manipulatedfinal scene. However, this book doesn't resonate the way Klass's last two did, and some of the charactersparticularly the two bad guysand climactic scenes bear the hallmarks of formulaic screenwriting. Ages 12-up. (Oct.)
Reviewed on: 01/01/1989 Release date: 01/01/1989 Genre: Children's
Mass Market Paperbound - 208 pages - 978-0-590-43187-3
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