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Maxed Out

by (author) Daphne Greer

Orca Book Publishers
Initial publish date
Feb 2022
NON-CLASSIFIABLE, Special Needs, General, Hockey
  • eBook

    Publish Date
    Mar 2012
    List Price
  • Hardback

    Publish Date
    Mar 2012
    List Price
  • Paperback / softback

    Publish Date
    Feb 2022
    List Price

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Where to buy it

Recommended Age, Grade, and Reading Levels

  • Age: 9 to 12
  • Grade: 4 to 7
  • Reading age: 9 to 12


Twelve-year-old Max just wants to play hockey.

But ever since his dad died, Max's mom has been struggling. Now Max has to take his brother, Duncan, who is autistic, with him wherever he goes. Max's team is counting on him to help them win the upcoming playoff game against the Red Eagles, but one practice makes it clear that it's not safe to leave his brother unattended on the sidelines. With only a week to figure out how he can play in the big game, Max is feeling the pressure. Will he find a way to be a good teammate, a good brother and a good son, or is it all too much for one kid?

This short novel is a high-interest, low-reading level book for middle-grade readers who are building reading skills, want a quick read or say they don’t like to read! The epub edition of this title is fully accessible.

About the author


  • Commended, Young Adult Library Services Association (YALSA) Quick Picks

Contributor Notes

Daphne Greer is the award-winning author of several books for young readers, including Finding Grace (Ann Connor Brimer Award finalist ), Camped Out (Hackmatack Award winner) and Jacob’s Landing (Silver Birch Award finalist and Hackmatack Award finalist). Daphne graduated from Mount St. Vincent University with a bachelor of child study. She lives in Newport Landing, Nova Scotia.

Excerpt: Maxed Out (by (author) Daphne Greer)

I can hear them. It's like I'm right there. I probably know who just scored.


Editorial Reviews

"A touching, well-told story of adolescence being usurped by caring for a special needs brother and a grieving mom...A well written, sensitive book that not only offers resolution to the storyline, but supporting information in the author’s notes (back of the book) to access organizations that offer assistance."

Tacoma Public School District

"Greer has some nice turns of phrase...[and] the closing scene in the novel is heart-warming and well written."

Resource Links

"A realistic portrayal of a family rocked by the sudden death of their husband and father. Targeted at 10- to 13-year olds, this novel does an excellent job of layering the stresses and tensions of Max's world...Greer delivers a well-written, engaging novel for preteens who will be drawn in by the apparent sports focused cover and the sports related theme but who will ultimately be exposed to a book that digs a little deeper and that turns out to tell a much more important story...Highly Recommended."

CM: Canadian Review of Materials

"This short novel delivers with a story that is both interesting and realistic."

Southwestern Ohio Young Adult Materials Review Group (SOYAMRG)

"Greer tells this story with genuine empathy as Max copes with his mom and brother, protects Duncan from a local bully, and sneaks in some fun with Ian. The resolution may be quick but is not too pat for credibility. Another fine entry in the Orca Currents line that will engage reluctant readers without talking down to them or sounding stilted."


"The boy's relationship with his family will hold readers' attention. This book would make a good purchase for large libraries or those that have heavily used reluctant-reader collections."

School Library Journal (SLJ)

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