From Newbery Medalist Cynthia Kadohata comes a brilliantly realized sports novel about a hockey player who must discover who he is without the sport that defines him. Hockey is Conor's life. His whole life. He'll say it himself, he's a hockey beast. It's his dad's whole life too-and Conor is sure that's why his stepmom, Jenny, left. There are very few things Conor and his dad love more than the game, and one of those things is their Doberman, Sinbad. When Sinbad is diagnosed with cancer, Conor chooses to put his hockey lessons and practices on hold so they can pay for Sinbad's chemotherapy. But without hockey to distract him, Conor begins to notice more. Like his dad's crying bouts, and his friend's difficult family life. And then Conor notices one more thing: Without hockey, the one thing that makes him feel special, is he really special at all?
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by Cynthia Kadohata
by Cynthia DeFelice
by Cynthia Rylant
"In this coming-of-age story, narrator John Kroft introduces Conor McRae, an endearing 12-year-old whose world revolves around his Doberman, Sinbad, and ice hockey. Kroft is an impeccable storyteller who excels at creating Japanese, Russian, and Eastern European accents. His best creation is Conor's neighbor, Mr. Reynolds, who utters, "Don't insult me" when Conor washes his car for free. Other standouts are Conor's hockey buddies: talented and thoughtful Korean-American Jae-won and Lucas, who gently introduces prayer into Conor's life. Listeners will feel like good friends who are privy to Conor's thoughts, relationship with his dad, and decision-making process, particularly after Sinbad needs costly cancer treatments. Kids facing difficult decisions will be inspired and motivated after hearing this spirited story. S.G.B. © AudioFile 2018, Portland, Maine"
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