New Bobby Orr Book Chronicles An Extraordinary Boston Bruins Legend

New Bobby Orr Book Chronicles An Extraordinary Boston Bruins Legend

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As a lifelong Boston Bruins fans, I love Bobby Orr. That’s why I was delighted to see a new book out about his life and legendary hockey journey.

Kevin Vautour, a member of the Society for International Hockey Research (SIHR) and the Rhode Island Reds Heritage Society; and Kerry Keene, a freelance writer and lifelong follower of Boston sports, have published their book Number 4: Bobby Orr! a heartwarming account depicting the phenomenal life of Orr and his contribution to the world of hockey that inspires others with respect and determination.

Authors Vautour and Keene delve into the persona of one amazing hockey player and the era of Bruin’s greatest peak. Here is the blurb:

Bursting upon the National Hockey League scene in the fall of 1966 amid enormous hype and expectations, Robert Gordon “Bobby” Orr would go on to exceed all predictions of greatness. Displaying All-Star level ability from the start, it was his talent as a play maker and scorer that utterly revolutionized the game of hockey.

At the same time, Orr helped revive a tired, long-suffering Boston Bruins team, leading them to their first Stanley Cup in 29 years at the age of 22. Orr and his teammates would drink from the Cup again two years later as he continued to cement his legacy with MVP Awards and Norris Trophies. The unforgettable sight of him rushing the puck up ice with blond hair flying was a thing of sheer athletic beauty.

But Orr’s fragile knees plagued him throughout his career, ultimately forcing him to retire before the age of 30. But in his decade with the Bruins, the remarkable body of work and the greatness he achieved prompt many hockey historians to regard him as the all-around greatest, most skillful player in history.

Vautour and Keene state that, “May 10, 2020 will mark the 50th anniversary of the flying Orr goal that helped the Boston Bruins to their first Stanley Cup in 29 years. That team and that goal inspired an entire region of men and woman, boys and girls to follow the game of hockey and the Boston Bruins.”

Published by New York City-based Page Publishing, Kevin Vautour and Kerry Keene’s riveting tale presents an encouraging perspective that proves how one man can revolutionize the world with sheer passion and dedication for his chosen field.

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For more information on Orr, visit his official website.

How The Boston Bruins And Team USA Inspired The Hockey Rivals Books

How The Boston Bruins And Team USA Inspired The Hockey Rivals Books

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What do the Boston Bruins and the U.S. Olympic Men’s Hockey Team have to do with my Hockey Rivals series? Actually, quite a lot.  Here’s the story of why it took me 26 years to publish a sequel to my classic YA hockey book Face-Off. How crazy is it that the sequel, Offsides, just came out last fall?

It’s even crazier when you consider that I wrote Face-Off when I was a teenager. I got really obsessed with pro hockey during the late 1980s and early 1990s. It started with the 1988 Olympics, which featured hockey players like Brian Leetch, Craig Janney, and Tony Granato. Once it ended, I started following the Boston Bruins.

The Bruins were awesome, playing the Edmonton Oilers in the 1988 Stanley Cup Finals. They lost, but they were still awesome. Soon, I had posters of Cam Neely, Ray Bourque, Craig Janney, and Bob Joyce hanging on my wall. Even though Wayne Gretzky was a rival, he was amazing to watch, and I even had him on my wall. Plus he was marrying actress Janet Jones, who I loved in the gymnastics movie American Anthem. So, I could forgive him for not being a Bruin.

In high school, I kept painstaking records of the Boston Bruins’ wins and losses. An avid reader, I also read any magazines and books about NHL hockey that I could get my hands on. I had a subscription to Hockey Digest and I’d pick up copies of Hockey Illustrated at the store. My dad took me to Bruins games and I’d buy various publications at Boston Garden. I read Gretky’s autobiography, and biographies of Bobby Orr and Phil Esposito. But I couldn’t find any YA hockey books at the library or in bookstores. Since I liked to write, I decided to write my own hockey books for teens – partly to entertain myself and partly on a whim. I’d seen an ad in Tiger Beat magazine for a young adult novel competition, open to teenagers, and I decided to write a YA hockey book and enter it in the competition.

YA hockey book

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I had a blast writing my hockey story of two brothers, T.J. and Brad McKendrick, who battle on and off the ice. I wrote in a notebook during high school study hall (and ahem, during boring classes when the teacher wasn’t looking) and my friend Joanne would give me feedback. I typed it at home on a Brother word processor. (Remember those?) I set the book in Massachusetts, a hockey hotbed, and made the boys Boston Bruins fans.

To my shock, I got a telegram during my freshman year in college, notifying me that I had won. I received a contract from a major New York publisher and it was a whirlwhind of local newspaper publicity and booksignings. I received fan letters like this one asking for a sequel:

“This is, by far, one of the best books I have ever read. Face-Off has an excellent climax and a superb plot . . . This is one book I think every hockey fan should read. Your book shows how in hockey, it’s not a one-man show and it takes a whole team to win. I know a sequel to Face-Off would be great. I couldn’t change any part of this story to make it better if I tried.”
– Adam from Ohio

Behind The Scenes Of A YA Hockey Book

So, in 1993, I decided to write a sequel. I finished the first draft of Offsides when I was twenty, a college sophomore. But when I submitted it to the publisher, there had been a major restructuring and my editor was gone. No one there remembered Face-Off as I got rejected with a form letter. Then I sent the story to other publishers. They weren’t interested in a sequel to a novel published by another company. Since no one would publish it, I put the book in a drawer.

Fast forward to 2011. After years of working as a reporter and continuing to write fiction, I was back in the publishing game with two adult mystery novels Twenty-Five Years Ago Today and Sink or Swim, and my young adult supernatural thriller Dark Before Dawn. Thanks to the growth of ebooks, there were many more opportunities for authors than there had been in the 1990s.

Since Face-Off was only available from used bookstores, I self-published a second edition in ebook, paperback, and Audible formats. It immediately started selling, and I vowed to publish Offsides also. I hired a company to scan my old manuscript into a computer so I could work with it again.

The book needed a lot of rewriting. I began researching junior hockey and Division 1 scholarships, but when my daughter was diagosed with Type 1 Diabetes in 2013, it hit me hard, and I stopped writing. When the words finally started flowing again, my muse was directing me to write my Storybook Valley romantic comedy series for adults. I needed to write something light and funny.

But I couldn’t stop thinking about my old friends Brad, T.J., Chris, and Jory, especially since mothers and grandmothers kept emailing me to ask about a sequel. Suddenly, I was inspired to go back to it before another generation outgrew the book.

This was one of the strangest, most rewarding, projects I’ve ever undertaken as I had such a unique collaborator–my teenage self. Once I got going, writing in the voices of the McKendrick boys felt totally natural to me. The twenty-five year wall disappeared and it was as if no time had passed. Over the next six months, I rewrote every single word. I’m grateful to my teenage self though, as she provided the basic outline. My adult self fleshed it out and improved the writing. I have to admit, it was fun giving the boys cell phones and showing them texting and on social media.

It was also interesting as my original “outline” was penned by a teenager, but when I was rewriting it, I had a parent’s perspective. Part of Face-Off‘s charm is that it was written by a teen for teens. With Offsides, it was neat to have my teenage self collaborate with my adult self and to blend both perspectives. I am also grateful to the organization College Hockey, Inc. for answering my questions about junior hockey and Division 1 scholarships.

Here is the blurb for the sequel. Twin hockey stars Brad and T.J. have finally resolved their differences and forged a friendship on and off the ice. What should have been the best year ever takes a nasty hit when the boys’ parents announce their divorce, and Brad makes a mistake that could impact his game eligibility. Meanwhile, T.J. faces off against their father, who opposes his decision to delay college and pursue junior hockey.

Adding to the tension are a rebellious kid brother, girlfriend trouble, and recruiting pressure. The turmoil threatens to drive the twins apart just when they need to work together the most. With a championship title and their futures at stake, T.J. and Brad must fight to keep from going offsides.

The book is available in paperback, e-book, and audiobook formats. I’m excited as the Audible audiobook edition came out last week, and in a neat twist of fate, the Boston Bruins are going to be facing the St. Louis Blues in the Stanley Cup Finals next week. How nice that the B’s inspired me to write Face-Off, and that Boston Bruins hockey is still going strong.

Offsides YA Sports Audiobook Perfect Road Trip Entertainment for Teens

Offsides YA Sports Audiobook Perfect Road Trip Entertainment for Teens

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Do you need some road trip entertainment for teens and tweens this summer? Offsides (Hockey Rivals Book 2) is now available as an Audible audiobook. Maxwell Glick, who narrated Face-Off (Hockey Rivals Book 1) is back as the voice of the McKendrick brothers in this explosive sequel, an action-packed hockey novel for young adults.

The release of the audiobook edition is extremely exciting to me as Offsides was published 26 years after the original publication of Face-Off. The print and e-book editions came out late last year, and Maxwell and I began working on the Audible edition in March. What a fascinating experience this was for me, revisiting characters I created at sixteen years old and hearing my scenes performed by a talented narrator.  I had such fun bringing Brad and T.J. into the present with cell phones, texting, and social media, and even more fun listening to Maxwell’s performance.

I think teens and tweens, especially sports fans, will love listening to the audiobook on car trips or plane rides. Here is a blurb:

Twin hockey stars T.J. and Brad have finally resolved their differences and forged a friendship on and off the ice. Now high school seniors, they focus on landing a commitment to a D1 school.

What should have been the best year ever takes a nasty hit when the boys’ parents announce their divorce, and Brad makes a mistake that could impact his game eligibility. Meanwhile, T.J. faces off against their father, who opposes his decision to delay college and pursue junior hockey.

Adding to the tension are a rebellious kid brother, girlfriend trouble, and recruiting pressure. The turmoil threatens to drive the twins apart just when they need to work together the most. With a championship title and their futures at stake, T.J. and Brad must fight to keep from going offsides. 

You can listen to clips of the Face-Off and Offsides audiobooks below.  If you start a free trial with Audible, you can get an audiobook for free!

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Buy Offsides on Audible

Conclusion

Here is a recent review from Ariesgrl Book Reviews“I read the first book in the series, several years ago and I loved it. I love hockey and I was thrilled to discover a middle grade book. With this sequel, I learned a lot about Junior league and the steps required to catch the eyes of colleges and the NHL. I hope the author continues to develop the series, as I am sure fans are going to crave more McKendrick hockey.”

I hope fans will crave more also as I have an idea for a third book.

Here is a post on why it took me 26 years to publish the sequel and stay tuned for an interview with narrator Maxwell Glick.

High School Hockey Coach Publishes Young Adult Hockey Novel

High School Hockey Coach Publishes Young Adult Hockey Novel

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Nick Boorman is no stranger to high school hockey. Besides penning the novel High School Hero: Freshman Year for Page Publishing,  he is also a high school hockey and soccer coach and physical education teacher. Teaching life lessons through sports is his passion. High School Hero introduces Gunner Bale, a first-year high school athlete who sets high goals for personal achievement in the classroom and on the ice. When he is selected for the freshman soccer team, he vows to do everything in his power to make the varsity hockey team; will it be enough? Here is an interview with Nick.

 

Have you had other careers before becoming a writer?

I am actually a really busy person. Besides being a writer, I coach varsity high school hockey and soccer. I am also a physical education teacher, summer camp director, and intramural sports coach. Becoming a published writer is a new chapter for me.

 

What inspired your latest release?

I have been a teacher for 10 years. When I started teaching I realized that many of my students who enjoyed sports did not have enough books they could relate to.  This led to many students saying they did not like to read. I decided to write a book that they would enjoy, not be embarrassed of, and actually learn life lessons through the story. 

 

Were you “born to write” or did you discover your passion for writing later in life?

I was not “born to write”. I have the learning disability dyslexia. Because of this, I grew up a struggling reader. Even though it was hard for me to read I still enjoyed it. Throughout my life I have learned a lot of great life lessons from sports such as the importance of teamwork, perseverance, always displaying high character, and positive leadership. As a teacher and coach I teach these lessons every day to my students and players. I wanted to reach a wider audience for my positive message. That is why writing this book was so appealing to me.

I was always told growing up that I was a good writer, but it took me longer to write than most of my peers. To be honest I was scared that I would never be able to finish a book. But because I was writing about something that really interested me I really enjoyed the process and finishing the book was not a problem.

How much of you is in the books you write? In what ways?

A lot of experienced writers say that writing about what you know is a great way to start. That is what I did. As a hockey and soccer player since kindergarten, those two sports helped shape who I am today. I wrote about many of my life experiences through a fictitious character. This book is by no means my life story, but there are things that happened to me and my friends that feature throughout the book.

 

Do you outline your books or wing it? Describe your process.

I outlined this book for seven years before I began writing. When I started teaching and realized that a vast majority of the athletes could not find a book that interested them that is when the creative juices started following. After seven years of outlining and planning, the book was more than ready to be written.

 

Do you have a view in your writing space? What does your space look like?

My writing space was different all the time. I carried my laptop with me everywhere I went and wrote in different places. I also came up with ideas in my head and would write notes in my phone regularly. The place where a vast majority of my book was written was in a quit dark room. There were no distractions, just me visualizing the story in my head.

 

Tell us about your hero or heroine. Give us one of his/her strengths and one of his/her weaknesses.

The main character of the book is Gunnar Bale. His main goal is to make his high school varsity ice hockey team as a freshman. Gunnar is small for his age and sports do not come easy to him. But Gunnar’s strength is his high character. He is a great friend to Amari and Wes, he is intrinsically motivated to be the best, and he has a contagious positive no quit winning attitude.  Gunnar’s weakness is controlling his emotions. Sometimes he acts before he thinks. This is something that many teens in the target audience can relate to.

 

You’re having a party. What character from your book do you hope attends? Why? What character do you hope doesn’t attend? Why?

There is an exciting scene in the book about a high school party. I certainly do not want to give away that scene. The person I would want most at the party is one of the main characters, Amari. Amari is an extremely hard worker, a great student, quarterback of the football team, hopeful for the varsity hockey team, and a great friend. Amari is a collection of the best parts of many of my friends growing up.

The person I would not want to at my party, and I would never invite to my party is Jimmy Marley. Jimmy is a very poor decision maker. He is a negative influence on all that cross his path. Jimmy portrays the negative path teens can go down while in high school.

 

What might we be surprised to know about you?

I was the captain of my high schools soccer, hockey, and lacrosse teams. I played college hockey for four years and captained the team as a senior.

 

high school hockey coach

 

 

About the Book

Gunnar Bale is just a freshman at Slayton High School, but he has high aspirations to be the big man on campus. Gunnar plays for his high school’s soccer team and is preparing for his top personal goal, making the varsity hockey team. Gunnar is accompanied by great friends and talented adversaries. Does Gunnar have what it takes to play for the best high school hockey team in the state? Can Gunnar survive the social pressures of the teenage wasteland he is dropped into? Strap in for the wild ride!

 

Excerpt

Below is an excerpt from the book. Gunnar Bale has been training to make his school’s varsity ice hockey team. A new student moves to town who is a great hockey player, and Gunnar challenges him to a roller hockey game. . . 

As Gunnar walked up to the roller hockey rink, upperclassmen were patting him on the back and yelling his name. Gunnar was all smiles. He loved the instant popularity and limelight. For a second, he forgot how nervous he was.

Gunnar started to strap up his rollerblades and the crowd started to get restless. Where was Jonny Clarke?

When Gunnar was fully suited up, the varsity guys skated off the rink. It was just Gunnar in the arena, with over three hundred raucous fans surrounding him. He started to skate around and stick handle. He had worked on his game so much, and he wanted to show it off. As he showed off some moves, toe drags, and dekes, the crowd oooed and ahhed.

The crowd was getting restless. Where was Jonny Clarke? Someone from the crowd yelled, “It’s past 6:15 p.m. This kid from Cali isn’t coming!” Right as he yelled this, a loud engine made a roaring noise. Everyone looked to the top of the hill parking lot. It was a brand new Maserati. Out stepped Jonny Clarke with his long bleached-blonde hair flowing in the wind, and his big muscles on full display. His rollerblades were already on and laced up. Jonny lived on the Slayton-Crayfield town line, better known as the filthy rich part of town.

All of Gunnar’s nervous thoughts instantly returned. He was about to play this monster of a freshman in front of three hundred screaming fans. He thought that if he won, he would be the hero he longed to be. If he lost . . . he couldn’t allow that to happen.

As Jonny zipped down the steep hill, the crowd started to get really loud, and the lights came on in the park and perfectly lit the entire rink. It was like he was a pro wrestler, strolling into the ring with a sold-out audience. Jonny played the role of the rockstar villain perfectly.

Jonny yelled out to the crowd, “Sorry to keep you waiting, I’m still on West Coast time. But I’m here. Let’s play some hockey!” The crowd cheered!

Jonny skated over to Gunnar. “Good luck, bro.” They both shook hands. “Everyone is here to see this. Hope you’re ready,” said Jonny with a smirk.

Nate walked out to the middle of the rink. “Listen up, everyone!” he yelled, “The game is to five, loser’s ball on every goal. Take backs to half court. These two diaper dandies will be shooting on the baddest goalie in high school hockey, the BRICK WALL, Steven Gomez!”

Steven went between the pipes. The crowd was shaking the fence and cheering their brains out. Jonny and Gunnar put their sticks down for the face-off. Gunnar looked right into Jonny’s eyes with the fiercest look he could muster up. He wanted to win the early psychological battle.

Jonny, as cool as the other side of the pillow, just smirked and  tapped his stick.

Nate dropped the hockey ball—GAME ON!

 

Where To Buy

High School Hero Website

Amazon

Barnes and Noble

iBooks

Google Play

 

 

Steven A. Falco Writes Baseball Books For Young Adults

Steven A. Falco Writes Baseball Books For Young Adults

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If you’re seeking baseball books for young adults, then you will want to read this interview with author Steven A. Falco. Steven pubished a young adult baseball novel entitled Mickey Mantle’s Last Home Run. This is his second book, and he is working on another book to be published next year.

Here is the book blurb:

TJ and Jonathan are teen-age friends and teammates on the JV baseball team. Like many young people growing up in America in the late sixties, they have heroes. For TJ, who is white, it is Mickey Mantle, the aging star of the New York Yankees. For Jonathan, who is black, it is Martin Luther King Jr., the leader of the civil rights movement. Unfortunately, 1968 is a bad year for heroes and—America. Their friendship is strained to the breaking point when Martin Luther King Jr. is assassinated.

Jonathan, who is devastated by the murder, blames all white people, TJ included. TJ then has to struggle through the challenges of the JV baseball season in his racially-torn town, without the support of his friend. Is there anything that can repair their broken bond? Would it take still another American tragedy?

Combining the heartbreak and hilarity of teen-age life in that tumultuous year, this baseball book for young adults provides a perspective from which to understand the racial issues that still prevail. It appeals not only to young readers but also their baby-boomer parents and grandparents.

Buy It On Amazon

 

What is your favorite part of writing?

My favorite is the creative part. I love it when my fingers fly over the keyboard and the words and ideas just flow out. It can be exciting and at times exhausting. I write very fast and I get a kick out of seeing how many spelling errors and grammatical mistakes I make by the time I’m done with a particularly engrossing writing session. I love to see how many red and green underlines I get when I’m done.

What is the least favorite part of writing?

No question it is editing. I refer you back to all the red and green underlines. There is no question that I like the creative part of writing the most. But writing is also a craft and good writing no matter how creative must be clear and readable. So I go back and tediously address all my misspellings and grammatical errors as best I can.

baseball books for teens

Some writers edit excessively as they write; others wait until a novel is finished to do bulk editing. How about you?

Definitely bulk editing for me. I do not want anything to interfere with my creative process which as I have said is my favorite part of writing. This style of course has a downside. I must have edited and rewritten my latest book a dozen times only to have my publisher recommend that I have my book professionally edited. And that turned out to be great advice. After editing my novel, my editer gave me two copies; the edited version with all the corrections indicated, and a clean copy. I took one glance at the edited copy and was demoralized by all the corrections. It made me feel like I was a terrible writer. But then I read the clean copy with all the corrections and I thought “wow, these are my characters and my story but do I really write this well?”

How much research was involved in writing your book? How did you go about it?

My novel takes place in the 1960s and specifically 1968. So I did a great deal of reading about that year. Since I also lived through that tumultuous year, I have quite a bit of knowledge. (Yes, I am that old.) But I really like doing research. I love studying history, spending time in libraries, watching old movies and going to museums.

What inspired your latest release?

I was inspired by a strong friendship I had back as a teenager and how the events of 1968 caused a strain in that relationship. The friendship was with an African American classmate back during a time when race relations in our country were particularly bad. I was also inspired by the moral commitment to social justice exemplified by the lives of Dr. Martin Luther King and Senator Bobby Kennedy, and their tragic assassinations play an important part of my narrative. Of course the main character in the book is inspired by his boyhood hero Mickey Mantle who at that time was at the end of his career. It was Mickey Mantle’s last home run, when combined with the heartbreaking events of 1968, that symbolize the loss of innocence of the main character.

How much of you is in the books your write?

It is often said that you should write about what you know. Having played and watched baseball all my life I have followed that aphorism. In my first book Grandpa Gordy’s Greatest World Series Games, I play the part of a grandpa (which I am not yet) and in Mickey Mantle’s Last Home Run, I’m a teenager (I’m long past those days). In both books my love of baseball shines through.

What is your latest book?

My latest book is Mickey Mantle’s Last Home Run which was published in December 2018 marking the 50th anniversary of the events in the book.

What else have you written?

I have written several short stories, one novella and a play. All of which have not been published. My other published book is for middle grade readers entitled Grandpa Gordy’s Greatest World Series Games. I have finished another manuscript that I hope to publish next year which is also about baseball. And I have an unfinished short story which is (brace yourself) about a dog, not baseball.  

Have you had other careers before becoming a writer?

I like to think of myself as having other careers while being a writer. I worked for many years in the social services field, spent time working for a labor union and now I do volunteer environmental work.

What’s your favorite film of all time?

Unquestionably it has to be Casablanca. It is a masterpiece. But just to show I’m not buried in the past I want to give honorable mention to this year’s Oscar winner Green Book. That was a well-made and inspiring movie. Favorite book? My favorite book is The Grapes of Wrath. If I could do it all over again I’d go back to college and do my master’s thesis on John Steinbeck. I would like to mention my second favorite book and pay my respects to Catcher in the Rye. And to once again show that I not stuck in the past a recent novel entitled All the Light We Cannot See, I feel is brilliant.

For more information about Steven A. Falco visit his website.

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Buy Grandpa Gordy’s Latest World Series Games

5 Children’s Hockey Books Named Face-Off

5 Children’s Hockey Books Named Face-Off

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There aren’t a whole lot of children’ hockey books out there. How ironic that so many of them are named Face-Off! When I named my children’s hockey book Face-Off many years ago, it seemed like the perfect title. After all, it was a hockey term and it also represented the friction between twin brothers Brad and T.J. McKendrick. What a perfect metaphor for a fictional book about hockey and sibling rivalry! Well, the title isn’t as original as I thought. Several other authors of hockey books for kids had the same idea.

I’ve known about the late Matt Christopher’s Face-Off children’s hockey book for years. Our books would often get mistaken for one another in the 1990s.  It was interesting to learn of some others.

Even though several books share the same title, that’s okay. There is plenty of room for other hockey books for kids, even if they’re named Face-Off. I thought it would be fun to compile them into a list. So here goes. Five children’s hockey books titled Face-Off! Click on the titles and book covers for retail links.

Check out 5 children's hockey books named Face-Off - different authors, same love of ice hockey. #hockey #hockeymom #Kidlit Click To Tweet
Face-Off by Stacy Juba – That’s me! Brothers battle on and off the ice in this action-packed young adult sports novel. It’s head-to-head, skate-to-skate, winner takes all! T.J. has gotten himself out of the fancy prep school his father picked for him and into the public high school his twin brother Brad attends. Now T.J. is a shining new star on the hockey team where Brad once held the spotlight. And he’s testing his popularity with Brad’s friends, eyeing Brad’s girl and competing to be captain of the team.

Meanwhile, the boys also grapple with problems at home, including divorcing parents and a troubled younger brother. The whole school is rooting for a big double-strength win…not knowing that their twin ice hockey stars are heating up the ice for a winner takes all face-off.

 

Face-Off by Jake Maddox – Kyle wants to be a great hockey player just like his older brother, but to do that, he must focus all of his energy on the game and not be distracted by a teammate’s injury.

Face-Off by Matt Christopher – A jealous teammate can lead to danger on the ice…. When it comes to skating, Scott Harrison can’t be beat. Still, he can’t believe it when he’s asked to play for the Golden Bears hockey team. But soon his excitement turns to doubt, then fear, when a resentful teammate ruins his confidence. Scott must confront his nemesis or give up his dream of playing hockey forever.

Face-Off by Chris Forsyth (Lorimer Sports Stories) – Mitch Stevens is a pretty hot hockey player: he’s fast, he’s smart and he’s tough. He plays centre on the A-line of his Toronto Pee Wee team, the Hillcrest Stingers, with his best friend Zack Andermann on right wing. Mitch and Zack have been linemates since they were five, so when they have to compete for a single spot on the league’s select team best friends become fierce rivals. Soon the pressure of competition drives them apart, and they’re forced to choose between their friendship and their ambitions.

Face-Off: Top 10 Lists of Everything in Hockey (Sports Illustrated Kids Top 10 Lists) – The fourth book in the best-selling Sports Illustrated Kids Top 10 series, Face-Off: Top 10 Lists of Everything in Hockey, ranks the best players, shooters, slap shots, and toothless smiles in the NHL. With over 150 different players and teams ranked in more than 15 different categories, this fun look at the greatest aspects of the NHL will serve as the ultimate argument-ender (or debate-starter!) for young hockey fans. 

Bonus Children’s Hockey Book

Face-Off at the Alamo (Screech Owls Book 23) by Roy MacGregor – This one isn’t called Face-Off, however it does have the phrase in the title! The Screech Owls have come to the southern city of San Antonio, Texas, a surprising hotbed of American ice hockey. They are here to compete in the San Antonio Peewee Invitational, and between games can explore the fascinating canals that twist and turn through a maze of shops and restaurants in the city’s downtown. The tournament has been set up to include guided tours of the Alamo, the world’s most famous fort, and for one night the championship team will even get to camp out in the historic site. The Screech Owls discover that the Alamo is America’s greatest symbol of courage and freedom, and when Travis and his friends uncover a plot to destroy it, they must call upon all the courage of the fort’s original defenders.

good books about hockey

Conclusion And YouTube Video

I hope you’ve enjoyed this peek at children’s hockey books named Face-Off. Below, check out my short YouTube video highlighting these books. Have you read any of these fictional books about hockey? Do you have any other children’s hockey books to recommend? Please share in the comments.

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