I received this book for free from in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.One Last Shot by John David Anderson
on May 5, 2020
A story of family, friendship, and miniature golf.
For as long as he can remember, Malcolm has never felt like he was good enough. Not for his parents, who have always seemed at odds with each other, with Malcolm caught in between. And especially not for his dad, whose competitive drive and love for sports Malcolm has never shared.
That is, until Malcolm discovers miniature golf, the one sport he actually enjoys. Maybe it’s the way in which every hole is a puzzle to be solved. Or the whimsy of the windmills and waterfalls that decorate the course. Or maybe it’s the slushies at the snack bar. But whatever the reason, something about mini golf just clicks for Malcolm. And best of all, it’s a sport his dad can’t possibly obsess over.
Or so Malcolm thinks.
Soon he is signed up for lessons and entered in tournaments. And yet, even as he becomes a better golfer and finds unexpected friends at the local course, be wonders if he might not always be a disappointment. But as the final match of the year draws closer, the tension between Malcolm’s parents reaches a breaking point, and it’s up to him to put the puzzle of his family back together again.
Malcolm Greeley doesn’t understand why his dad won’t just let sports go, well he does understand that his dad was big into sports, especially when he finds his trophies in the closet one day, not a speck of dust on them. Luckily, his dad has let him quit baseball when he sees he isn’t enjoying it. When they have a fun time playing mini-golf, his dad notices how good he is, finds him a coach and a competition to participate in. How can he say no?
One good thing about mini-golf is that he meets Lex one day, a girl who says “five” instead of “fore”, wears a backpack with a million buttons, and has parents that live separately. When his parents start to fight more and even spend some time apart, she’s the one person he feel like he can talk to about what is going on.
I really had a hard time starting this book, I wasn’t in the mood for something so real but when Lex showed up, I became more involved in the story. I really love Lex, she definitely adds something to the story, she gives Malcolm a purpose and a friendship that he needs (maybe a little more?). I like their differences and how they support each other throughout the story. While Malcolm’s coach is funny and has some weird and funny moments, Lex is really the star of this story for me.
Overall a great story about friendship, family and mini-golf.
Here’s the Reader’s Guide for the book.
About the Author
John David Anderson is the author of some of the most beloved and highly acclaimed books for kids in recent memory, including the New York Times Notable Book Ms. Bixby’s Last Day, Posted, Granted, Sidekicked, and The Dungeoneers. A dedicated root beer connoisseur and chocolate fiend, he lives with his wonderful wife and two frawsome kids in Indianapolis, Indiana. He’s never eaten seven scoops of ice cream in a single sitting, but he thinks it sounds like a terrific idea. You can visit him online at www.johndavidanderson.org.
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