Book: Losers Take All
Author: David Klass
Publisher: Farrar, Straus and Giroux (BYR)
Paperback: 320 pages
The tagline of the book—who says winning is everything—says it all. In Losers Take all, everyone cheers for their favourite team “Losers” not for winning, but for losing. This hilarious book had me laughing all through the story.
At Jack Logan’s sports-crazy New Jersey high school, the new rule is that all kids must play on a team. So Jack and a ragtag group of anti-athletic friends decide to get even. They are going to start a rebel JV soccer team whose mission is to avoid victory at any cost, setting out to secretly undermine the jock culture of the school. But as the team’s losing formula becomes increasingly successful at attracting fans and attention, Jack and his teammates are winning in ways they never expected—and don’t know how to handle.
The story starts with the death of Jack’s school principal, Arthur Gentry, at an athletic event. Mr. Muhldinger their football coach becomes the new principal with a bold new policy. All seniors must play in a team. Jack and his anti-athletic friends decide to rebel, and form a JV soccer team. This team with an unlikely coach, and uninterested players finish their first match with astounding results. No, they don’t win the match, but people from all over the country cheer the losers for not winning. What follows is a humourous (sports?) adventure of Jack and his friends.
Losers Take All is a fun read with quirky characters, ingenious sports mishaps, and a huge dollop of humour. The author, David Klass, has a fantastic way of weaving humour, and conflict in the plot which grabs the attention of the reader throughout the book. Losers Take All reminded me why I loved sports when I was in school.
Jack, and his girlfriend Becca are both strong characters. Though Jack’s father and older brothers are sports-crazy, Jack can’t play a single sport. Instead of doing what he doesn’t like, Jack has the guts to do what he wants. I loved the way Jack evolved throughout the book. Becca knows what she wants, and is determined to get it.
The first time I read the football scene in the book I was like why is he using hands instead of legs. If like me you’re used to British English, this is a tip for you: in the book (which is written in American English), regular football is called soccer, and American Football is referred as Football.
If you love sports, you’ll love this book; if you don’t, you’ll love it even more. I recommend this book to everyone who loves a good humour.
Buy Losers Take All at Amazon.
*I received an advanced review copy from Macmillan Children’s Publishing Group via NetGalley for an honest review.