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Deadline

3.97 of 5 stars 3.97  ·  rating details  ·  9,181 ratings  ·  1,198 reviews
Ben Wolf has big things planned for his senior year. Had big things planned. Now what he has is some very bad news and only one year left to make his mark on the world.

How can a pint-sized, smart-ass seventeen-year-old do anything significant in the nowheresville of Trout, Idaho?

First, Ben makes sure that no one else knows what is going on—not his superstar quarterback bro
...more
ebook, 336 pages
Published April 21st 2009 by Greenwillow Books (first published September 1st 2007)
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
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Maja (The Nocturnal Library)
2.5 stars
An 18-year-old boy with big plans for his life finds out that he only has a year to live. He decides to refuse treatment and to keep his diagnosis a secret. Instead of telling his family the truth, he is determined to make the most of the time he has left. He joins the football team, even though he is extremely short, and he finally gathers the courage to approach the girl he’s been admiring from afar for as long as he can remember.

Deadline is actually a pretty decent story. Despite it
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Marya
If you want a great teen book about football and male camaraderie, read "The Knights of the Hill Country".

If you want a great teen book about dying, read "Before I Die".

If you want an OK teen book that tries to connect football and dying in trite statements like those you'd see on inspirational store fridge magnets, read this book.
A.
I don't even know what to write in a review of this -- anything I could say about how much it moved me, how utterly perfect it was, would give away the ending and the power of the book. Regardless: this one kept me up until almost 3 a.m. on Friday because I just couldn't stop turning the pages. Crutcher's a great writer, the style's fantastic, and the narrator is unlike any narrator I've ever met before (though he may strike some readers as a bit of a Gary Stu; I honestly didn't mind his perfect ...more
Stacy
this would have been a pretty good book except for 2 things:

1) LANGUAGE PROBLEMS on every page---f bombs everywhere
2) Political smears from the left---throughout the book

DON'T WASTE YOUR TIME
Patrick
The good news is this is a great novel about life, death, and the truth that lies in between. The voice of Ben is very strong: smart, sarcastic, and always searching for truth. The story itself is just fine as well with all the elements one expects in a Crutcher novel: the not quite perfect romance, the sports angle, the distant slightly tortured parents, the helpful if overmatched therapist, and the school based subplot with good guy hero standing up against bad guy teacher. Ben's journey is th ...more
Thomas
Nov 03, 2014 Thomas rated it 3 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Boys
Ben Wolf is used to being out of the limelight. He is dwarf-sized and constantly overshadowed by his younger brother Cody, who is also the school football team's quarterback. Not that he really minds, because as brothers they have always been tight. He also has a crazy, possibly bipolar, mom whose ups and downs always affect him more than he would like. Couple that up with a very strict, by the book Civics teacher and an impossibly beautiful Dallas Suzuki, his senior year should be one heck of a ...more
Kathryn
About once a year I find a book that makes me cry at the beginning and again at the end and changes my life somewhere in between. Last year that book was Speak by Laurie Halse Anderson, the year before it was Louis Sachar's Small Steps, and the year before that it was Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants by Ann Brashares. But now, at the tale end of this year, I can tell you that Deadline has changed the way I look at life, given me hope for the future and made me a better person, all within 316 pa ...more
Amy
Okay, I don't know what's wrong with me, but I really, really didn't like this book. It's about a high school senior who finds out he's dying and decides not to tell anyone. It's so far out of my realm of possibilities that I just read it to see if Crutcher could convince me of it's plausibility. He didn't. The dude's voice really irked me too. I think the author went too far with the perfectly blended confident-clever-smart-athletic-but still humble character he always writes. Anyone care to ar ...more
M
Maybe its my having spent too much time in the classroom, or maybe it's because Back in My Day teens were slapped for this sort of thing, but my threshold of tolerance for Obnoxious Teens is really, really low. There is a thin yet very much there line between charming and smart mouth. The narrator here is a guy who is diagnosed with an unnamed because who cares disease and will die within the year. He snot nosedly tells off the doctor who is begging this incredibly annoying boy to get treatment, ...more
Emily
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Sam
I wanted to make sure that I read this book after the brouhaha around it and Crutcher's heated response on his MySpace page. It seemed like a good selection to get around to for Banned Books Week, and it didn't let me down.

Deadline features the story of Ben Wolf, a young man on the brink of high school graduation who is diagnosed with a terminal illness (never specified, just identified as a blood disease) during a physical for cross country the summer before his senior year. After finding out t
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Joanne
Chris Crutcher is usually good, and this one is ok, but I think he tried to do way too much here and ended up with width, not depth. Let's see: fatal blood disease, alcoholism, mental illness, rampant sexual abuse, physical abuse, teen parenting, bad bad parenting, brotherly rivalry, racism, car accidents, hidden pasts of all kinds, "lies my teacher told me" - is there anything I missed?* My head is spinning from all of the big issues Chris Crutcher tries to cover here. I get that his main point ...more
Kathy
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Anna
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Mackenzie
This is the second book I've read recently that's been about choices. Choosing between life or death. And I have to say, I think I liked this one better than If I Stay, which don't get me wrong, was amazing, but I think Deadline was absolutely stunning.

I was really moved by this novel. The only thing that had me slightly confused was all the football stuff. I'm not a football fan by any means - hockey is my sport ;) - so all the stuff about football, it's terminology and everything went a little
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Erika

Before reading this book, I was under the impression it was a boys book. I had heard a lot of it was dedicated to football so I wasn’t sure it was going to be my thing. I couldn’t have been more wrong! I absolutely loved it! Perhaps it was growing up watching sports all my life or my respect and fascination with the bond between brothers but I couldn’t put this book down.

As a reader, I really enjoyed the main character’s voice. He was witty and entertaining but we also got to hear his inner feel
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Cornmaven
I was really disappointed with this book, considering how much I liked The Sledding Hill. I think Crutcher tried to do too much in this book, and couldn't decide what he wanted to emphasize the most. Plot of kid who turns 18 then finds out he has a terminal illness and then refuses treatment and keeps it all secret so he can live a 'normal' life was interesting. I liked the scenes which had him challenging the smarmy history/government teacher; those seemed very real. But having the kid's mother ...more
Michelle
This book was a bit weird for me. I liked that the general fact of the novel, that the protagonist is going to die, is presented at the very beginning but the way it was written wasn’t as agreeable for me to begin with. I think that of all the books that I have read so far, this one was a bit harder for me to read because I kept getting distracted. I don’t think that the idea that an eighteen year old will keep the secret that he has been told that he is going to die is entirely implausible, I t ...more
Meredith
I would have given this book a better rating, but there were two things that bothered me:

1) I did not understand any of the football lingo at all. Now, that doesn't really mean too much coming from me, since my knowledge of football is on the same level as my knowledge of advanced calculus, but I had to skim over dozens of pages because I had no idea what was going on.

2) While I respect the right of the patient, I was really bothered by the main character's reasons for refusing medical treatment
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Angela Juline
I can definitely understand why a teenager would like it...but I thought it had just a bit too much drama (or rather, too many traumatic events)...but I did laugh and I did cry, which always boosts a book's score for me!
Mari
i think i'm becoming a sucker for tearjerkers.

this book made me cry so much my nose was red and runny when i finally got to the end. i loved the relationship between ben and cody. also, reading about football made me interested to check out other football books (e.g. friday night lights, etc.)

p.s. i think dallas suzuki is one of the coolest names ever.
Paulina Pappas
"Deadline" is a story about a high school senior named Ben who has one year left to live. The story is about how he decides to spend his last year. He is 18 years old so he legally doesn't have to tell anyone and that's what he decides to do, for the most part. Ben has ran cross country for the past three years of his high school career but decides to change it up this year and be on the football team with his brother. He goes out for the most attractive girl in his eyes who is Dallas. Ben also ...more
AJ
So I bought this book around 6:30 p.m. and finished it around 3 a.m. the next morning. That's my intro to this review.

I honestly couldn't put this book down. It's compelling, there is always something else you want to know more about. The plot had some pretty crazy twists in it and for those who are reading it right now and are unsure about it, just plunder through. The way this book is written may appear simple, but if it were any more complicated, it would have been a pain and if it would have
...more
Terry
This is a completely engrossing read. The premise is straight forward enough, but this is Chris Crutcher, so there are interesting characters, sports, coaches, a believable teen romance. And, as usual, Crutcher provokes thought on difficult issues. What IS the best way to live? What lies should you tell, if any? How WOULD you live if you only had a year left? Can one person make a difference? Whose oxygen mask goes on first?

I read this right after reading Downham's Before I Die, and the contrast
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Bonnie
I must admit that I wasn’t expecting to like Chris Crutcher’s Deadline. I am not a big fan of the sports novel genre, so I read this book a little begrudgingly. Surprisingly, the book was a fairly enjoyable read. However, I was bothered by the number of issues that Crutcher tries to cram into one novel. In addition to having a protagonist that finds out the summer before his senior year that he only has one year to live, the novel introduces issues of child molestation, child abuse, alcoholism, ...more
Jeff Bassin
Deadline is a highly emotional and involving tale that warps and wraps you in its strong grips, asking you, the reader, the same question its protagonist, Ben Wolf, must ask himself. What would you do if you had one year left, and knew it?
What follows is an extraordinary example of not only the things one can do with a little more confidence and courage, but also the effects one’s decisions have in rippling towards others. The story itself is nothing more than a tearjerker about a person who fi
...more
Carrie
This book was everything good that Crutcher does, without the things I honestly didn't like about Whale Talk (and will forever feel horribly guilty about telling him to his face at a conference a few years ago...) Yes, there was a LOT of angst in this book, rather than feeling like he just threw it all in for the shock value, each piece of angst had a very intricate place in this wonderful book that asks the question "What if you only had a year to live...and you know it?" The small town atmosph ...more
Holly
Aug 25, 2009 Holly rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Everyone
Ben Wolf has done more with his senior year than I could have ever thought to accomplish with mine. He's a real kid who makes the decisions he does because he thinks it's for the best. That's what makes Deadline one of the most touching novels I've had the pleasure to read.

Ben finds out he has a terminal disease, but he doesn't want to tell anyone because he doesn't want them to treat him any differently than before. He wants to be normal. And he's going out with style.

When you have a smart mout
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Nate H
This quarter I read the emotion jerker Deadline written by Chris Crutcher. The book is based upon an 18 year old kid named Ben Wolf. Ben is going into his senior year of high school when he is diagnosed with cancer and is told he has one year to live. Ben isn’t sure at first how to react, so he tells the doctor to not tell his parents. The doctor must follow his orders considering Ben is 18, an adult. Ben could approach his last year two different ways, sad and depressed, or with an attitude of ...more
Lizf
I end this book with a resounding ehhh. Something about this book just irritates me, but I'm having a hard time figuring out just what that is. I was able to complete it no problem but a lot of it just had me wanting to drop the book on the floor.

As a reader, I was very annoyed with the character of Ben. It felt like he was a bit too perfect of a character for me. He was very intelligent, open minded, snarky, witty, athletic, and had a 'pretty' girlfriend. His intelligence and snarkiness bothere
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Chris Crutcher's writing is controversial, and has been frequently challenged and even banned by individuals who want to censor his books by removing them from libraries and classrooms. Running Loose and Athletic Shorts were on the ALA's top 100 list of most frequently challenged books for 1990-2000. His books generally feature teens coping with serious problems, including abusive parents, racial ...more
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“Love, in the universal sense, is unconditional acceptance. In the individual sense, the one-on-one sense, try this: we can say we love each other if my life is better because you're in it and your life is better because I'm in it. The intensity of the love is weighted by how much better.” 101 likes
“But the truth doesn't need to be known, or believed, to be true.” 77 likes
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