________________ CM . . . . Volume XXII Number 3 . . . . September 18, 2015


Betting Game. (Orca Sports).

Heather M. O'Connor.
Victoria, BC: Orca, 2015.
199 pp., pbk., pdf & epub, $9.95 (pbk.).
ISBN 978-1-4598-0930-7 (pbk.), ISBN 978-1-4598-0931-4 (pdf), ISBN 978-1-4598-0932-1 (epub).

Grades 7 and up / Ages 12 and up.

Review by Mark Mueller.

**** /4

Reviewed from Advance Reading Copy.



I study each player, breaking down his skills. What he's good at, what needs work. Who he connects with. I chuckle to myself. It's like choosing fantasy-soccer picks.

Jack and his brother are the star players on the elite soccer team, the Lancers. Jack is on top of his game, and he has a keen eye for detail when it comes to predicting the moves of the other teams. The Lancers are favoured and slotted to win the National Championship, and things cannot seem to get any better. When a slick bookie wins Jack's friendship and introduces him to the illegal world of match setting and gambling, Jack gets addicted to the world of betting. When Jack finds himself in over his head in gambling debts, he is forced to confront the realities of the underground gambling world and to make some tough decisions. Will he take the easy way out and jeopardize the Lancer's chances of winning the championships? Or will he risk the safety of himself and his loved ones?

      Betting Game is Heather O'Connor's contribution to the "Orca Sports" series. Like other titles in this series, Betting Game is a high-interest read for reluctant readers. Betting Game is a very compelling story with interesting characters that kept this reader wanting to read more. O'Connor deals with topics that would be well worth discussing with almost any teen: the value of team-work; honesty; and ethics. I will certainly include Betting Game in our curriculum resource collection and would recommend it for other school libraries as well.

Highly Recommended.

Mark Mueller is the Education Librarian at Tyndale University College in Toronto, ON.

To comment on this title or this review, send mail to cm@umanitoba.ca.

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