Recommended Age, Grade, and Reading Levels
- Age: 10 to 13
- Grade: 2
- Reading age: 7 to 8
For thirteen-year-old David Timko, making the Bantam A hockey team is everything. So when he doesn't make the cut and is forced to play house league, his bad attitude soon gets him benched. Even worse, his new friend at school, Omar, shows a complete lack of understanding of David's problem.
Omar, on the other hand, has problems of his own. A recent Syrian refugee, he's angry that his parents can't find good jobs in his new country or provide for him the way they used to. And he's desperately missing his older brother, who was left behind in Syria. As both boys become more frustrated with their own problems, their friendship begins to suffer. David wonders why Omar can't see how important hockey is to him, while Omar thinks David is acting spoiled. Can the two boys come to an understanding of each other's problems before their friendship comes to blows?
About the author
Steven Sandor is a veteran and somewhat grumpy sports and music journalist. He spent seven years working with the Edmonton Oilers Hockey Club. The former editor-in-chief of Edmonton's Vue Weekly, Steve is now a senior editor with 24 Hours in Toronto. His work has appeared in magazines and newspapers in Canada, the US, the UK, Hungary and the Czech Republic. He enjoys writing about sports that have goals—hockey and soccer. Steve enjoys spending as much time as he can with his wife and son, and making strange electronic music. He supports Arsenal. For more on Steve please visit www.stevensandor.com or read his blog at www.blog.canoe.ca/thefull90.