By: Stacy Juba. Format: eBook. Read: September 2013.

T.J. McKendrick can’t do anything right to please his father, despite the fact that he attends a prep school and is top of his class and on several sports teams. His twin brother, Brad, feels that T.J. is the apple of their father’s eyes and despite all of his hard work, he can barely maintain a C average in his public school. Brad hates school, but is looking forward to the start of hockey season. That is until their parents inform them that they can no longer afford T.J.’s school and they will both be forced to attend the same high school. Now Brad fears loosing his friends and the all important Captain spot at the start of hockey season. Not to mention, their younger brother Chris seems to keep getting in trouble and their parents are always arguing which upsets their youngest brother Jory. Will the twins come together to help there younger brothers or will the competition for attention and acceptance destroy their relationship for good?

Stacy Juba originally wrote this book when she was a young teenager, yet readers will not believe that while reading this book. Fans of hockey will love every single detail that takes place on the ice and about the ice. Non-hockey loving fans will not have to worry about being confused by statistics or technical jargon, since it is quite clear that Juba wrote this for every reader to enjoy. Readers will be chuckling at the antics of the youngest brother Jory, while readers’ heartstrings will be caught up effects of the tumultuous relationship of the parents. Readers will be able to relate to Brad, T.J. and their younger brothers. The sudden ending will leave readers needing more, but there is a small excerpt from the book’s sequel. Juba’s excellent talent for balancing human emotion, hockey and high school will create instant fans in the readers.

I loved this book! First off, I am a huge hockey fan. (Born and raised cheering on the Washington Capitals.) Second, this book perfectly demonstrates the inner turmoil inside families, whether it is the side effects of parents fighting or sibling rivalries. Even with the abrupt ending, I would highly recommend this book to middle school children or adult fans of hockey/YA books.


A copy of this book was provided for me to review. To learn more about this author and her work, please visit her website.


Filed under Young Adult Books

3 Responses to Face-Off

  1. Brandie Mcnemar

    Great review, at times I really like some YA reads, they are easier and quick which is a nice change every so often. I was looking for some recommendations for books, I really want some to snuggle up with now that the seasons are changing. I would recommend 2 that I found though, by Barbara Briggs Ward, barbarabriggsward.com. They are The Reindeer Keeper and The Snowman Maker. They are heartwarming stories and short easy reads. Something to just pick up and read one day!

  2. Pingback: Welcome… Author, Stacy Juba!!! | Ariesgrl Book Reviews

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