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Thirteen-year old McKay is a talented baseball player, but as equally untalented when it comes to algebra. If he doesn't bring his grade up, his parents threaten to make him quit the team. His best friend Tony thinks the natural solution is for McKay to befriend Serena, a pretty girl in class, who also happens to get straight A's in algebra. Not only will that get McKay the tutor he desperately needs, but it will give Tony the chance to flirt with Serena's two best friends. Unfortunately, if McKay follows Tony's advice on how to "play the game," he might find himself in an even worse spot than when he was merely failing algebra. With a keen sense of wit, and more self-confidence than he gives himself credit for, McKay will keep readers alternately laughing and groaning as he is dragged kicking and screaming into the subtle (and often not so subtle) world of teen dating.
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Janette Rallison has been writing since she was six years old, although the quality of her work has improved substantially since then. She enjoyed both math and softball in the eighth grade. She has published four romance novels (two under the pen name Sierra St. James), and for two years served as president of the American Night Writers Association. She lives in Chandler, Arizona, with her husband, Guy, and their four children. This is her first book for teens.From School Library Journal:
Grades 5-8--Thirteen-year-old McKay has to improve his algebra grade or he'll have to quit the baseball team. His friend Tony thinks the solution to his dilemma is to get to know Serena, a pretty girl with a history of straight A's. If McKay can convince her that he likes her, then he'll have the help he needs and Tony can flirt with her two friends. Everything works beautifully until Serena uncovers the plot, and her friends become enemies when Tony turns out to be a less-than-suave boyfriend. McKay's grade improves, but he takes no satisfaction from all the effort without Serena to share in his success, because he really does like her. He also has to deal with his little brother who shares his room and keeps getting into all his stuff, and parents who just don't seem to understand that an eighth grader needs a room of his own. Rallison uses humor and realistic characters to bring the boy's problems to a satisfying conclusion. The protagonist is genuine, honest, and endearing without being sappy or pathetic next to the more Casanovalike Tony. Plus, this book is really funny. It should be a hit with anybody interested in boys, girls, baseball, friends, and that mysterious world of a first crush.
Linda Bindner, formerly at Truman State University, Kirksville, MO
Copyright 2002 Cahners Business Information, Inc.
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Book Description Walker Books for Young Readers, 2002. Hardcover. Condition: New. Seller Inventory # DADAX0802788041
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