Friendless except for his pet snake and the embalmer at the local funeral home--his favorite hang-out--Eric tries to resolve his problems in spite of his father, who lives vicariously through Eric's rough ice hockey.
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Chris Lynch is a National Book Award finalist and the author of many highly acclaimed books for young adults, including The Big Game of Everything, Who the Man, and the Michael L. Printz Honor Book Freewill; Iceman, Shadow boxer, Gold Dust, and Slot Machine, all ALA Best Books for Young Adults; and Extreme Elvin. He also mentors aspiring writers and teaches in the creative writing program at Lesley University in Cambridge, Massachusetts.From School Library Journal:
Grade 8 Up-Like Lynch's Shadow Boxer (HarperCollins, 1993), this metaphor-rich, coming-of-age novel with a sports backdrop focuses on a conflicted teen seeking his own identity. Divided into three sections paralleling the periods of a hockey game, the story is told by 14-year-old Eric, whose hitman tactics on the ice mask his alienation from his family and from the game he plays so mean and hard. The boy is encouraged by his father, whose bloodlust defines his enthusiasm for the game, and confused by his fanatically religious mother. His iconoclastic older brother, Duane, lightens Eric's life with his upfront humor and helps him finally come to terms with his anger. The language is at times raw, but not out of character. The first period is filled with the gratuitous violence that has been the young man's trademark; in the second period, Eric does penance on the ice, sacrificing his body to stop the puck; and in the final period, he becomes the skilled skater, sharp shooter, and team player he always wanted to be. Also in this section, he becomes disillusioned with a maverick loner whom he idolized and abandons his notion of pursing a career in mortuary science, opting instead to deal with the living. Hockey enthusiasts will enjoy the abundant on-ice action, although this novel is clearly about much more and is no advertisement for the sport. Eric's narrative voice is clear and distinctive, and his brother, mother, and father all emerge as unique and often touching characters even though they serve highly caricatured roles in the story. Although Eric's difficulties are resolved too easily through the magic of the metaphorical last game, Iceman will leave readers smiling and feeling good.
Jack Forman, Mesa College Library, San Diego
Copyright 1994 Reed Business Information, Inc.
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Book Description Harpercollins, 1994. Library Binding. Book Condition: New. Bookseller Inventory # DADAX0060233419