Friday, December 21, 2012

Get Your Head in the Game

Winning the City Redux by Theodore Weesner
Earlier this year I read (and enjoyed) Weesner The Car Theif, which is why I agreed to read this one. Except I was a little frustrated at first because it almost seemed like both book had the exact same characters just with different names. Both characters (Dale in this book, Alex in The Car Thief ) are being raised by a single father whose an alcoholic, and works at a car plant. Both love playing fans of basketball, but don't really fit in at school. I believe that the majority of these books are autobiographical which is why the characters are so similar, but still... I just wish the characters hadn't felt like carbon copies of each other.

Even with that complaint, I still enjoyed the book. Halfway through unless I really made myself think about it, I forgot I had that issue initially. You just get so wrapped up in Dale's story, about how he has lost something he believes belongs to him, and so badly want him to succeed.

The book did include a note saying this was previously published as Winning the City in the early 1990s. The difference between the two versions is that the newer one expands on the relationship between Dale and one of his teachers. Except that plot line seems to be so central to the story, I can't imagine what the other book would have been like. Without that plot line I think you could more easily classify this as Young Adult fiction, but given the way its currently written I wouldn't feel comfortable recommending this to a high schooler.

I am surprised how much I enjoyed it, especially how frustrated I was with the similar character at the start. If this is your first Weesner book you really wouldn't have that issue, and if you wanted to read something by him, I think this (versus The Car Thief ) is the better choice.


Disclosure: I was provided this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. All opinions expressed are my own.

Today I'm linking up with Blonde Undercover Blonde for Book Club Friday!

1 comment:

  1. It does seem like some writers really "write what they know." At least it's enjoyable even if it's familiar???