Willy the Scrub (Young Reader Fiction)

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9781581960105: Willy the Scrub (Young Reader Fiction)

It’s hard being different. Everybody in Willy’s family is an athlete—even his mom. And, although Willy wishes he were like the rest of his family, no matter how hard he tries he never seems to be as good as they are. When he hears there’s going to be wrestling try-outs, he and his best friend sign up. Even if they never get to play, they’ll be the best benchwarmers of all time! A hi-lo book for reluctant readers.

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From School Library Journal:

Grade 3-5-When Willy and his friends begin fifth grade, they decide they will get into the "in" crowd by becoming jocks. First, they join the football team, and Biff, an older boy, badgers them and calls them scrubs. Willy is not as fast or as coordinated as the other players, but he sticks with the sport. Although he never plays in a game, his father assures him that going to practice makes him just as much of an athlete as Biff. When the boys try wrestling, Willy again feels as if he is out of his league, especially when he faces off with Biff, who wrestles like "an oily boa constrictor." Still, he works hard to improve his skills and increase his endurance. Ultimately, he learns to accept himself and discovers that he can be a "real jock" in his own way. Willy's vulnerability and his desire for peer acceptance make his story appealing. Writing with humor, McEwan weaves these themes into the narrative in a natural way and endows several supporting characters with refreshingly non-stereotypical traits and interests. Short chapters and a large font make this book a good choice for sports fans from newly independent readers to those already enjoying Matt Christopher. Small, droll illustrations appear at the beginning of each chapter.
James K. Irwin, Nichols Library, Naperville, IL
Copyright Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

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