Dec 04, 08
Recommended to Anderson by:
No one i found it one day just looking around
Sports lovers ( preferably Football lovers)
Read in November, 2008, read count: 1
Pre-AP English 10
5 December 2008
Gym Candy by Carl Deuker
All his life Mick Johnson has lived and breathed football. He has dreams of one day being like his dad and being the superstar. His dad has been workin with him since he was four, taking him to all the best camps, teaching him the best moves, and teaching him the most important thing; there is no crying in football.
Mick starts his career playing pop warner football when he is little. He goes through his early life dominating the field. It is not until he reaches Varsity level that he meets his match. Matt Drager is the starting running back for Shilsole high. He is big, mean, and cocky. He gives Mick a bad time his first year and finally the next year he beats Mick up just because he could. Let’s just say they were not friends.
One day Mick’s dad comes in and tells him that the radio station he works at bought a weight lifting gym called Popeye’s. Mick had the speed and agility, but he lacked size and strength. His dad got him a personal trainer named Peter Volz. Peter notices that Mick could use a little “help.” Peter offers Mick steroids. At first Mick refuses but in the end he decides to try them. What he doesn’t realize is that he just bought a ticket for the wildest ride of his life that leads to pain, suffering, anger, and sadness.
This book in my opinion was one of the best books that I have read in a long time. It had everything that you could ask for in a book. Since it was about football, I could really relate to all that Mick was going through. I have had the same feelings of not being good enough and wanting that edge over the other player. It is always nice to find a book that you can relate to.
I really like how intense the story gets at times. For example, one time Mick was walking down the hall and someone bumped into him. As soon as the person hit Mick, the steroids took over sending him into a “roid rage.” He grabbed the person and slammed him into the lockers. He scared the person so bad that he started crying. He then realizes what was going on and regained control of himself.
In addition, the story is somewhat sad at times. The steroids do make Mick stronger, but they have many bad side effects. For instance, Mick got bad zits and started growing breasts. For a while, he could not take his shirt off without being embarrassed. I felt bad for Mick because of all that. However, I felt somewhat glad because I did not think that he should have taken the steroids so at times I thought he deserved it.
Although it tied into the story well, I did not like that the main character tried to cheat his way to the top. If he would have played fair and by the rules, I think that he could have got the same results. The only down side to that is it would have taken longer. I believe though that no good thing comes easy.
No matter what you should never, try to cheat your way to the top. It does not make a fair playing field for everyone else. However, if you want to find out what happens to Mick or if he ever gets caught, you will just have to read the book yourself.
Page Count: 313
Genre: Realistic fiction/Sports