review by John Chon, age 15

Hooper by Geoff Herbach

    Hooper, by Geoff Herbach, is unique in many ways, especially in its subject matter. The book follows an awkward, young high schooler, who centers his entire life around basketball. To quote the protagonist, Adam, “Basketball is a passport.” He is very adept at the sport, and soon finds himself immersed in its world completely. He uses it as an escape and a sole truth in his life. Adam eventually uses basketball as a ticket to college. But, he faces difficulties here as well, all culminating in a choice that makes him decide how much his college teammates matter to him.
    Herbach writes a compelling story, with the book being written through the eyes of awkward, single-minded Adam in a mix of past and present tense. He shows how young adults can be angry, sad, happy, and more emotional than they are prepared to be. However, the book also feels stilted and faked at times, with Adam showing a lack of complexity that I doubt he really lacked. Ultimately, this is a fairly hard read, because it is written in a different style and does not have a connection that I could make with the main character. 3/5 stars.


Find this book in our catalog: Hooper

Catalog Number: On Call

326 pages

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