Stephen's Reviews > Knights of the Hill Country

Knights of the Hill Country by Tim Tharp
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's review
Feb 23, 2012

really liked it
bookshelves: books-read-in-2012, sports, teen-reads
Read in March, 2012 — I own a copy

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 changing, getting wilder and meaner, and the boys' friendship may be bringing Hampton down.

This is a great coming of age story that mixes elements of "Friday Night Lights" with elements of "Of Mice and Men." In this case the Lenny character is the narrator and the real risk of ruin is coming because of the George character, the smaller, supposedly smarter, fast talker. And somehow, despite our age's more jaded attitude, the outlook here seems more omptimistic.

This is a fast and mostly fun read despite the ominous overtones that seem to foreshadow a potentially tragic end. The football descriptions are good and will appeal to younger males (often reluctant readers). But football doesn't make up so much of the plot that female readers will be alienated. In fact, several female reviewers have lauded this book for the way that the main character Hampton thinks about and treats women. He is a red blooded teenaged boy but he's not as obsessed as so many other male protagonists have been portrayed in other YA fiction.

If you like good YA fiction centered on friendship and/or football, this is a good choice. There are no gay characters per se in this book and none of the character even give off that vibe but the story is about the friendship between young men and will appeal to the gay reader as well.
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Quotes Stephen Liked

Tim Tharp
“That's how it is with legends. The greater they sound, the more must've got left out.”
Tim Tharp, Knights of the Hill Country

Reading Progress

02/23/2012 page 40
17.0% "Great start! Has the feel of the Friday Night Lights TV series."
03/01/2012 page 145
60.0% "The narrator has traces of the big guy from of mice and men"

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