The sensitive male teen, yes he actually exists and you’ll find him in the narration of books by Jordan Sonneblick. His characters always seem like the teens I’d like to adopt. They are often handsome and smart without knowing it, use a lot of self-deprecating humor and are in the process of falling in love.
In Curveball, The Year I Lost my Grip, Peter Friedman is facing two crushing disappointments..
Since Little League, he has always been a star pitcher. The summer before entering high school, he has his best season ever on the pitching mound. Then in the championship game, he injures his elbow so severely that he will never be able to pitch again.
Then, there’s his grandfather, he and Pete have always shared a special relationship. Grandpa is a professional photographer who has taught Peter everything he knows. Suddenly grandpa is doing strange things like giving Pete all his photo equipment and getting lost on familiar streets.
For many students, high school can feel like a letdown after ruling middle school. Josh no longer has his baseball to set him apart. Life becomes brighter when he meets Angelika in photography class. Angelika is a sensitive girl who has a way of getting to the real issues. She understands that Peter has experienced a great loss and empathizes with his worries about his grandfather, encouraging him to discuss it with his parents instead of keeping his grandfather’s secret.
This is a great book for middle and high school students. While there is definitely romance going on, this book is about much more. Readers will find Pete’s narration to be humorous even as he deals with loss and finds a new life after baseball.