Kessia Robinson's Reviews > Running Loose

Running Loose by Chris Crutcher
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's review
Mar 31, 2012

liked it

Running Loose features Louie Banks, an average guy who just wants to be on the football team and enjoy time with his girlfriend, Becky. However, things change when his head football coach encourages the team to purposefully injure the star player for another team, Washington. Tension runs high, especially since the coach and team also speak inappropriately against Washington for being black as well. Louie chooses to stand up for what he believes in, quitting the team with the support of his family and, of course, Becky. He gets a lot of pressure about it and faces further difficulties involving Becky, which I won't spoil. In any case, I enjoyed the read. I thought it interesting that there were so many positive adult role models in the book. I also thought the idea of fair play in sports and racism seemed like an important topic. However, to me, the plot felt random and disconnected. The conflict with football and school administration fit in nicely--but what happened with Becky in the end seemed random and disjointed. Perhaps that was Crutcher's point about death, but to me, it felt like Louie ran out of conflict and so a new conflict had to be introduced to give the book its last zing. I'd probably recommend ages 13-15 with this book. There's some language, but not much, and I feel like the content would be appropriate for this age group.

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