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Knights of the Hill Country
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Knights of the Hill Country

3.74 of 5 stars 3.74  ·  rating details  ·  529 ratings  ·  99 reviews
In a small Oklahoma town, one star linebacker must decide what kind of man he wants to be--both on and off the field.
Welcome to Kennisaw--where Friday night high school football ranks right up there with God and country, and sometimes even comes in first. This year, the Kennisaw Knights are going for their fifth straight undefeated season, and if they succeed, they'll be m...more
Hardcover, 240 pages
Published August 22nd 2006 by Knopf Books for Young Readers
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Community Reviews

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Cara
This one is going to be a hard one to review because I don't think I can do it justice. There is nothing extraordinary about the book but that is what makes it so great. It is a story about growing up and you do it along with our football hero Hampton. You can't not love him. I mean you can only wish there are guys out there like him.

The relationship he has with his best friend Blaine did give me a lot of insight of why guys do stupid things, even though it may still be wrong at least now it mak...more
Ash
I usually don't like reading books with boys being the main characters because, let's be honest, in almost every book I've read where the main character is male there's always mention of boobs and sex. Quite frankly this annoys me, and I find it totally unnecessary. The main character is obviously still a boy but I found that his thoughts on these things were much less frequent and less perverted than in other books that I've read. That's besides the point though. I'm not really a football perso...more
Valerie
I think this is a really good book. It seems honest and real. All the characters are developed well and Hampton (main character)seems so genuine. Of course, with having a real male character I found out things that I didn't really want to know. Like how horny teenage guys might look at girls but it wasn't too bad, it was mostly just annoying.

Hampton has problems and a lot of them. Family problems (his mom ignores him), girl problems (he likes a girl who is not the football-player's-girlfriend t...more
Stephen
This is a story of Hampton Green and Blaine Keller. Two high school football players from Kennisaw, a town in the Oklahoma Hill Country. Its also a story that centers on the game of high school football and the friendship between these young men. It was Blaine that first got Hampton interested in playing football, his family took Hampton in when troubles at home got too intense, and these boyhood friends have been inseperable all the while they were growing up. But now Blaine seems to be changin...more
Lani H
Plot Summary-
Knights of the Hill Country is a suspensful book about a star football player, Hampton, stopping time. Well, he couldn't actually stop time, but when he was on the field, it seemed as if he could. He would freeze everything that was going on in his mind like a picture. He used this method to win games for his team. He would look at all the players on the opposing team and see what they were doing. He would look at the quarterback and see who he was going to pass the football to and...more
Heather
I read this story over the weekend, and I found it to be really good--very Friday Night Lights (and I LOVE Friday Night Lights). Hampton Green, the afore-mentioned star linebacker is a likeable character (if you can get around his bad grammar and southern dialect and affinity for idioms like "He doesn't give a day-old donut" and "Boy Howdy!")

Also, the girls in Hampton's life (the not-so-cut-out-to-be-a-football-player's-girlfriend Sara, and the way-too-typical-football-player's-girlfriend Misty)...more
Krista
Hampton is at a crossroads the start of his senior year: as his high school football career takes off, and his romantic and family life both take turns for the better, his longtime, charismatic best friend Blaine is on a downward trajectory. Used to existing in Blaine's shadow, Hampton begins to question some of the beliefs and behaviors he has tolerated. Hampton is the kind of main character readers root for, an honest, socially awkward young man who cares about his friends and family. Never a...more
Jorge
i choose this book because on the cover therre is a picture of a football player, and later on in the book i find out he is a lineback like me but the problems he has off the feild is completly diffrent from mine. his father left him and his crush is the smart girl that a jock like him isnt supposed to associate himself with. other than the subject of football i thouight this book wasnt that great. i dont really recomend this book to people unless they want a book about a teen and his truobles o...more
Ryan
In a small Oklahoma town where Friday night lights is like Christmas, the only thing that matters to the Kennisaw Knights is keeping the record of 5 straight undefeated seasons. Hampton Green Kennisaw’s star linebacker is hit with hurdles to see what kind of man he really is. When on the field, Hampton has the game in his hands, there is nothing that can stop him, but off the field he isn’t in control of anything. He is stuck dealing with his mother going from boyfriend to boyfriend ever since h...more
Carlos Ocegueda
I found this book on the library shelf when I was looking for high school football books. The book takes place in a town in Oklahoma. Most of the story takes place in the town at school and at home. And other towns on football fields. Well one of the conflicts is that he is talking to this girl and going out on dates as friends but he really likes this other girl. And also he is trying to help is team win their fifth undefeated season, the most in school history. The main character is Hampton. H...more
Jeff Thiel
Knights of the Hill Country started slow, but finished fast. Hampton Green is a high school football player in the hill country of Oklahoma. Playing for the Kennisaw Knights has been the pride and joy of his life, especially considering the crummy life he's had outside of football. His friends are stereotypical meatheads who live and die by Friday nights; luckily for them the last 4 years of Fridays have been victorious and they'll try to match history this season going 5 straight seasons undefe...more
Amy
What a great book for sports-minded junior high age boys! I'll be book talking this one in the future!

Ever since Hampton's dad walked out on him and his mom when he was 8 and they moved to Kennisaw, OK just to get away from the bad memories, Hampton has been best friends with Blaine. In fact, some might even say that Hampton and Blaine are more like brothers than best friends. It is Blaine's dad who takes Hampton in under his wing and introduces him to football. Now, as seniors, Blaine and Hampt...more
Kaio Menezes
Not a very exciting book. Its not really a sports story which was what I was looking forward too. Theres not really a major conflict in the book its just really how him and his best friend fight. Its also hard to understand sometimes because they speak in a southern way so sometimes i didnt get what they were saying
Jeremy
A small, football-mad Oklahoma town (think Friday Night Lights with a dash more Toby Keith) is the backdrop for this engaging read about a young man battling self-doubt, navigating a changing and dangerous friendship, and learning to take responsibility for his future. Hampton Green learns to believe in his own judgment and moral compass, but what stood out most to me is his acknowledgement of his own limitations and determination to become at peace with himself despite them. Pretty deep stuff,...more
South Brunswick High School Library
As linebacker for the Kennisaw Knights, Hampton Green shines on the football field, but despite his star status Hemp’s life off the field feels out of his control. His best friend Blaine struggles when Hamp’s achievements begin to overshadow his own. On and off the field, Blaine expects loyalty from Hamp. When Blaine’s demands go beyond what Hamp believes are right, will Hamp confront Blaine? Far beyond a book about football, the voices in Tharp’s first novel for young adults truly capture the p...more
Donna Burtwistle-Popplewell
LOVED this novel! Yes, it features awesome high school football game narration in small town America, and yes, it reminded me of Friday Night Lights. Hampton Green is a linebacker who has some serious skills, but so does the rest of his team, who represents a winning school in Oklahoma. Undefeated for five seasons, the Knights have a HUGE reputation to uphold. Hamp's best friend, Blaine, is not only his teammate, but as close as a brother and someone who thrives on their elite position in their...more
Fahr
Knights of the Hill Country was a book that included suspense comedy and action. Even though I am not a big fan of football myself I feel like the author did really well of building character emotion and making the reader feel a sense of personal connection to each character, in a different way. More so, the author uses a very interesting story line which allows him too swerve the story in anyway he wants. This also allowed him to implement a suspenseful and thrilling ending. Overall I would say...more
Erika
Oklahoma
This was so footballish and redneckish that I am somewhat surprised I finished it. Besides the annoying Oklahoma dialect (I done it, hisself, boy howdy) the writing was decent. I didn't realize Tim Tharp wrote The Spectacular Now, which I have been wanting to read. This book just was not for me; I am not a sports person.
Hampton Green is a 6'4" tailback(?) who is so good at football he can "freeze" time and make amazing plays. I didn't get much out of the football games and amazing plays...more
Nicholas Kimble

This astounding book takes place in Kennesaw, Oklahoma where Religion comes 1st and football comes second, depending on who you ask. Star linebacker, Hampton has a hefty weight on his shoulder after he tries to carry the Knights to their 5th undefeated season in a row. Although living up to that kind of legacy on the field comes with enough pressure on its own, Hampton handles it with ease. Infact, Hampton’s so in control on the field that it seems like he’s able to stop time, but it’s a differe...more
Kassian Prior
The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald is about a WWI veteran, Nick Caraway who moves to New York in search for work as a sales bondsman. He moves into a small lake house in the town of West Egg. His neighbor, who he knows none about, throws extravagant parties each weekend. Over time, upon his neighbors noticing of Nick, he personally invites him to one of his parties where they meet and Jay Gatsby more formally introduces himself. He tells a tale of a woman named Daisy Fay, who just so happe...more
Billie
This is a great football story, but even more, it is a story of how relationships grow and change. Hampton and Blaine are best friends, play football and hang out together. Hampton tells us the story about how his father leaves the family and shares with us the devestation that resulted. His mom sees many men as a result and he turns to Blaine's family for stability and encouragement.

Blaine is an outstanding football star suffering the consequences of injury. The lack of football scholarships c...more
Richie Partington
19 October 2006 KNIGHTS OF THE HILL COUNTRY by Tim Tharp, Knopf, August 2006, ISBN: 0-375-83653-5; Libr. ISBN: 0-375-93653-X

What is this world coming to? Two football stories worth my talking about in the same year? What is next -- me out there barbecuing tofu at a tailgate party?

"Taking up my middle linebacker spot, I knew Wynette had to pass. The smart play would be to shoot a short one out to the sideline, get out of bounds, maybe move the chains, but something told me that old camel-faced Ti...more
Beverly
Apr 01, 2012 Beverly rated it 2 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: 14-16 year olds
Recommended to Beverly by: YALSA
Knights of the Hill country is more of a coming of age story than sports story, but teens who like realistic fiction will enjoy it. The characters are cliche, but interesting. Hampton is an unremarkable young the man. The kind of teen who would be invisible in his high school and small town, except for his phenomenal football skills. Fatherless Hampton feels indebted to his best friend since third grade, Blaine. Blaine's father became Hamp's surrogate father and taught Hamp everything Hamp knows...more
Lynn
So different than all of the vampire/angel/werewolf books or the spoiled brat city kid dramas out there. I really enjoyed this book.

Hampton Green is the star of his high school football team. Not that Hampton feels like a star or even believes he deserves to be a star. Sure, he's a fantastic linebacker who has garnered the attention of college football scouts. But it's Hampton's best friend, Blaine, who is the real star. Until Blaine injured his knee during a game, he'd been the one everyone ha...more
Ian
“I done it. I stopped time.” From the first sentence I was immediately drawn into the story. Knights of the Hill Country by Tim Tharp is a thrilling novel. It’s about a high school football player named Hamp Green who wants nothing more than to play college football at Oklahoma University. But his best friend Blaine is holding him back from making his dreams come true. Blaine has played football his whole life. He’s a good player but he lets his mouth do the talking instead of taking it out on t...more
Dan
Friendships are the hardest thing about life. If they are true friendships they always take work and rarely come easy. Hampton Green has had his friend Blaine by his side since he moved to Kennisaw in elementary school. Blaine’s dad became a father figure to him when things weren’t great at home, and most of all they were the reason Hampton got into football to begin with. Blaine is a big headed cocky running back and Hampton is the beastie coolheaded middle linebacker and this is reflected in t...more
Conner Schuh
This story takes place in Kennisaw, Oklahoma where football is taken very seriously. Hampton Green is a young high school football star part of the Hill Country team who is trying to lead the team to the fifth straight undefeated season. Blaine being one of Hamptons best friends is someone who he really listens and looks up to. Hampton starts to notice for the first time that Blaine starts to become someone who he has never met before, not making the most wise decisions. It’s always Hampton who...more
John
Overall, I think Knights of the Hill Country By Tim Tharp is a 5 out of 10. This book was decent but didn’t really have a story line. I felt like the story was just being dragged on throughout the novel and nothing was really going on. The characters however were very relatable in that they play football and are in highschool just like me. The plot was hard to identify because like I said before there was no real storyline. The author just goes through the main character Hampton’s life in high s...more
Megan
I enjoyed this book, for the most part. The characters, especially Hampton and Sara and even Blaine, were well-developed. I really liked Hampton, and I loved Sara. I loved the way that the setting was used (it felt a lot like my high school). I liked the high school football backdrop.

Still, though, this book didn't captivate me the way I thought it would. The plot was...well, I didn't find it. There were elements to the story that needed to be better developed--things like Hampton's relationshi...more
Abby
Jul 16, 2009 Abby rated it 2 of 5 stars
Shelves: teen
I read Tim Tharp's latest teen book, The Spectacular Now, in the fall and LOVED it. Sadly, this book is no Spectacular Now. It's narrated by Hampton Green, a teenage football player from the Oklahoma hill country, whose life pretty much consists of playing football, riding around his small town with his best friend Blaine, and pining after Sara, a sharp, intelligent girl who doesn't fit into his social circle (football players & cheerleaders). Written in Oklahoma hills dialect, Hampton's voi...more
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Tim Tharp lives in Oklahoma where he writes novels and teaches in the Humanities Department at Rose State College. In addition to earning a B.A. from the University of Oklahoma and an M.F.A. from Brown University, Tim Tharp has been a factory hand, construction laborer, psychiatric aid, long-distance hitchhiker, and record store clerk. His first novel, Falling Dark (Milkweed Press), was awarded th...more
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“That's how it is with legends. The greater they sound, the more must've got left out.” 23 likes
“You know how when you see someone day in, day out, year after year, you don't really notice him getting taller or wider or older or whatever? It can be like that with the way people are on the inside too.” 11 likes
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