Monday, June 2, 2014
I recently read Payback Time by Carl Deuker. Daniel True is the main character and he goes unnoticed at his high school. The fact that he is overweight has earned him the nickname "Mitch," short for Michelin Man. Mitch is an aspiring journalist and he wants to write about serious topics. When he finds out that he isn’t going to be the editor of his school’s paper, he’s extremely disappointed. The new editor assigned him to report for the sports section, but he decides to take his new role seriously. Mitch is teamed up with photographer named Kimi. They uncover a scandal involving one of the varsity football players. Mitch has noticed this highly-talented player named Angel Marichal who is used infrequently and is “hidden” by his coach, but who appears to be quite the talented player. Mitch’s journalistic side gets the better of him because he knows there’s a story about Angel, so he and Kimi start digging. After tireless digging, Mitch and Kimi discover they just might be sitting on a scandal that could cause serious trouble in his school’s athletics, get the football coach fired, and lose them all sorts of friends. Also, his investigative work may have put his life, and the lives of others, at serious risk. Mitch is a great character. It is great to read how Mitch is taking more control of his life and working hard to be what he wants to be. For sports fans, the descriptions of the action in the football games are well-written, but not so in-depth that a non-sports person would feel lost. I enjoyed this book for a couple different reasons. The exciting football play-by-play and the mystery surrounding why Angel isn't playing, combines to make Payback Time a suspenseful, engaging and action-packed story. This page turner is a gripping read.