By: Miranda Keneally
Published By: Sourcebooks Fire
Release Date: Dec. 1, 2011
Genre: Contemporary Fiction
Reading Level: Young Adult
Buy the Book: Amazon
Goodreads Summary: What girl doesn't want to be surrounded by gorgeous jocks day in and day out? Jordan Woods isn't just surrounded by hot guys, though-she leads them as the captain and quarterback of her high school football team. They all see her as one of the guys, and that's just fine. As long as she gets her athletic scholarship to a powerhouse university. But now there's a new guy in town who threatens her starting position... suddenly she's hoping he'll see her as more than just a teammate.
Even though this book sounded interesting, I didn't give reading it much thought because I don't like football. And when I say I don't like football, I mean that I won't even watch the Superbowl to see the commercials because it's a football game. But Cari from Cari's Book Blog insisted that I had to read this book, so I did. And once I started reading, this book became one of those "drop everything and read" books for me.
Jordan Woods is not your typical girl. Instead of wanting to date a football player, she wants to be one - and she's one of the best. She's the quarterback and captain of her high school team in Tennessee with her sights set on playing in college at Alabama. Jordan doesn't see any reason why this won't happen or any reason to change the friendships she's always had with the other guys on her team. Then Ty shows up and changes everything. He's a quarterback too, and for the first time Jordan has to worry about her position. That's not all - she might actually like him, a guy on her team, when she's never liked a guy before. And when one thing changes, it seems that everything changes. As Jordan deals with her feelings, she comes to realize that unlike in football, in life, there is no playbook...and no rules.
First things first. Even if you don't like football, don't let that stop you from reading this book. I think I constitute the worst football fan ever (if you didn't get that before), but none of the football scenes in this book bothered me (I even got the references to players and plays. Go me!). That being said, Catching Jordan is about so much more than football. It's about relationships on many levels - those we have with a significant other, those we have with our friends, and those we have with our family. I loved Jordan as a character. Her love for football and her status as "one of the guys" made her different from a lot of the female protagonists in YA, but even still she had to deal with the same issues that we all do, which make her very relatable. I really enjoyed watching Jordan explore the different relationships, especially the one with her dad, and I could appreciate how she came to realize that sometimes there isn't only one path to making your dreams come true.
Another thing I loved about Catching Jordan was how honest and real everything felt. All of the main characters had their own stories that made me love them that much more. Not only did the characters come to life, but also the emotions were raw and acutely felt. Jordan's poems especially added so much depth to the story. Both Jordan's struggles and the characters themselves have stuck with me even though I've read other books since then.
Catching Jordan is a fantastic debut novel with a story that will by turns tug at your heart and make you smile. I cannot wait to read more from Miranda Kenneally!