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Fiction Ages 9-12
Pages: 136
Themes: track and field, sprinting, competition, friendship
Publisher: Orca Book Publishers
Pub Date: 01/11/2012
Fry Reading Level: 3.9
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Maddy doesn't find it easy adjusting to grade nine. The friendships and loyalties she took for granted in middle school are being challenged, and there's so much more competition on her track team now.

When Maddy stumbles across a friend being bullied behind the school after a track practice, she suspects something nasty is going on. So when Coach announces one of the team members has been robbed, she realizes the two incidents must be connected. Everyone on the track and field team is under suspicion. How can the team function with so much uneasiness among its members? Maddy realizes the only way to bring the team together again is to make some changes.

Tucson Unified School District - May 23, 2013
"Realistic and well-paced, it should appeal to fans of the Orca Sports series."
Booklist Online - January 8, 2013
"This high-interest, low-reading-level title balances slow pacing with a well-developed story as bullying, theft, and surrounding secrets add challenges for Maddy, her friends, and their entire track team. Loughead explores the importance of friendship, communication, forgiveness, standing up to bullying, truthfulness, and doing the right thing in this timely story, and readers will empathize with the subtle misunderstandings that lead to Maddy's alienation from her old friends, while cheering for her as she tries to set things right."
Resource Links - December 1, 2012
"Loughead has created rich and evocative characters in Maddy, Kat and Shauna. Their struggles are universal and explored with insight."
CM Magazine - October 26, 2012
"Moves at a moderate pace and uses clear, straightforward language...A good read for a student who is not sure what to expect of the transition to high school, or who is experiencing anxiety over the transition, and for those readers interested in reading about sports and athletics."

Awards

YALSA Quick Picks nominee  | 2013 | Short-listed

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