Kick - Walter Dean Myers, Ross Workman
Kevin Johnson got himself into trouble. He was caught in the middle of the night in a stolen car with a girl that had clearly been crying. When asked over and over what he was doing and why he stole the car and tried to kidnap the girl he can only shrug. Kevin doesn’t feel like he can explain – it isn’t his secret to tell.Sergeant Brown is involved in the case when a thoughtful judge thinks there might be more to the story than meets the eye. In an attempt to stop Kevin from messing up his life any more, Sergeant Brown is asked to mentor him and guide Kevin and his family through the particulars of the case.At the same time, Kevin’s soccer team is headed into the most important soccer games of the season; the games that will hopefully lead them to the state championship.In alternating points of view, a story of friendship and self awareness unfolds. Kevin changes quite a bit through the story and gains some maturity that will definitely help him become a good student, friend, and maybe even policeman (someday in the future).I have a few issues with the story. Kevin seems like a GREAT kid and evidence in the book supports that, but he is constantly portrayed as being one step away from a major life of crime. Also, the final story of why he and his friend were in the stolen car is not nearly as bad as it should be. There really isn’t any reason Kevin shouldn’t have just told the truth right away. The trouble the girl was in just wasn’t bad enough to warrant the brouhaha that followed. Finally, I have to say that soccer was too much a part of this story. It was more soccer than anything else. Apparently Kevin had a bad temper and it got him in trouble on the soccer field sometimes. It seemed like the authors were trying to make it sound like his temper got him in trouble off of the field too, but there wasn’t any evidence of that in the story. NOW, if his temper would have led him to the crimes he was being charged with and he had to overcome his feelings of rage on the soccer field in order to learn how to handle them in real life, it would have made a more believable story and one more expected from Walter Dean Myers.The origin of this story is amazing. Ross Workman emailed a fan letter to Walter Dean Myers explaining why he liked his books. Walter Dean Myers responded to the email with a proposal. He asked Ross to co-author a book with him. They would write the story in alternating chapters – Myers starting out with the first 10 pages and then Workman supplying the next 10 pages. Workman was 13-years-old when he started KICK with Myers. WOW! So cool!