by Fred Bowen
Published March, 2017
Advanced readers copy provided by publisher
Eighth-grader Richie Mallon has always known he was a shooter, but will his amazing shooting talent be enough to keep him on the team? Outside Shot tells the story of eighth-grade basketball player Richie Mallon, who is known as the shooter, the one on the team who scores most of the baskets. He has practiced every day at his driveway hoop, perfecting his technique. Richie never plays any other roles on the court; he lets his teammates do the assisting and rebounding. Richie makes the team under a tough new coach, but he's not a starter. Then when his shooting skills go into a slump, he must find a way to become a more well-rounded player. Author Fred Bowen continues his Sport Story Series with full court, play-by-play action thats sure to keep readers on the edge of their seats!
Richie starts out quite sure of himself at the beginning of the book since he has a reputation of being able to make shots consistently. He and his best friend Bryce are certain that they will both be starters on the 8th grade team. But, when he tries out for a new coach, he makes the team, but he is not first string.
Richie is stunned and sets out to prove his worth to the coach. He is very concerned about his stats, most specifically, points scored and percentage of shots made. When he hits a dry spell, Richie grows more and more stressed. He starts to befriend one of the managers who keeps the stats and she suggests that he try to also get more assists and rebounds and perhaps his shot will return. But who would he be is he weren't "the shooter"?
Richie learns some valuable lessons in this story and many middle graders will enjoy it. It's length, font size and readability make it quite manageable for many in grades 3-5.
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