February 1, 2012

Book Review: Catching Jordan by Miranda Kenneally

Catching Jordan
At First Sight: Jordan Woods is the star QB of her high school's awesome football team and dreams of playing college ball for Alabama. Jordan Woods is also a girl. Not that she's going to let that stop her. After 10 years playing, and with the support of her best friend Sam Henry (and the other guys on the team), her Mom and brother, Jordan is ready to go where no girl has ever gone before... even if her father - the Great Donovan Woods, QB for the Tennessee Titans - doesn't agree. 

Having grown up being considered one of the guys, Jordan thought she was rather immune to them... that is, until Ty showed up and threw the whole dynamic off, even shaking the foundations of the Henry-Woods alliance. Henry has been Jordan's best friend for the last ten years; but with a boyfriend in sights just how much space there is Jordan's life for boys who are just friends?

Second Glance: Catching Jordan is a book that aggravated me, made me angry and came close to being a DNF. I think part of it was because I was expecting a lot because I had heard very good things about it. But, I liked it more than I expected half way though when I thought Jordan might be a bit TSTL. She wasn't, in the end, but she was incredibly dense. 

Even so, Jordan proved to be a good narrator as she tries to navigate through her first crush and her last year of high school. I loved how her team supported her even if I thought her dream of playing college ball was a bit unrealistic - as her father points out, she's going to have guys twice as big as her hurling themselves at her, and no matter how good she is, she could get more seriously hurt than most, and the fact that she didn't seem to fully understand that pulled me out of the story every once in a while. 

But, as I said, I loved the team. They were awesome friends to Jordan - particularly Henry, Carter and J.J. - and I even loved the girls she grows to be friends with (though her disdain for other girls got old fast, and I was glad when she got over it). Now, there is a very complicated love triangle in this story and I have to give props to Is Kenneally because it was very well written - it drove me insane but it was a good triangle and I'm glad I picked the right guy for once, I usually root for the one who doesn't get the girl. 

Now, on the down side: It took me forever to feel comfortable with the characters and I think that the fact that they were often referred by their last names - like Jordan is Woods and Sam is Henry and so on - had something to do with that. I thought the drama went on and on (though I'm not deducting points for that as this is high school and I can see it happening like it did), and the writing went back and forth between really good and kind of cheesy (particularly in the dialogue).

Bottom Line: All in all, Catching Jordan was a mixed bag of peanuts. It got a reaction out of me, and a pretty good reaction at that, so that's always a plus. Was it perfect? Did I love it? Not exactly, but it resonated and it kept me up reading, and in the end, I cared more than I thought I would. 

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