It has the promise of football and boys. How could I say no? Plus the very, very lovely Madeleine completely raved about it so I knew I had to read it. And Miranda Kenneally has the best taste in books. Honestly, there were too many reasons.
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 on 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 starring position on the team... and has her suddenly wishing to be seen as more than just a teammate.
My Expectations: Pretty high. I thought I would adore it, but I might have been worried it’d be too… fluffy?
Delivery: I was actually surprised by how much I loved it.
Put-down-ability: Imagine this: middle of midterms. I have a few hours to spare so I thought I’d read the first few chapters. I ended up spending the entire night finishing… reading on my computer no less. SO SUPER LOW OMG. 1/10
Do you remember the feeling that you should probably tackle the mountain of schoolwork you have but you can’t, because you’re so engrossed in a book? Yep. *points to self*. That was Catching Jordan for me.
I can’t even get over how much I was charmed by this book. With Jordan Woods and her ridiculously
Let’s start with Jordan, shall we? She’s kick-ass and vulnerable at the same time-- stubborn, funny, and authentic. I thought her voice was captured extremely well in the writing and it was this smooth and conversational style of narration that pulled me into the story right away. And this is partly because of the way she was written—sometimes you have books where the characters are so twisted or confused about their feelings that you’re just drowning in a pool of emotions, but this book is different because of the openness and honesty behind the main character. I'll admit sometimes her thoughts are just slightly too romance-centric (or maybe I was just cheering for someone else ;] haha). It was much easier to relate and care for her because of this, and trust me, I was pretty darned emotionally invested in her fictional life.
And can I just talk about how strong each of the supporting characters was? I loved the conflict she had with her dad, the relationship she shared with her brother, her completely present and supportive Mom, but above all I loved the dynamics of the football team (hehe). With such an interesting group of players it’s (almost) impossible to pick favourites (oh HEY, HENRY). Is it superficial to say that the abundance of holy-shiznit-hot boys is enough to pick up the book? And oh, it’s not all cute boys because some of them are totally lame but some of them are fricken golden so I’m like I WANT ONE. And I'm gonna say that I totally picked the best boy from the beginning ;)
Okay, I needed to stop that tangent.
I didn’t like a few of Jordan's choices throughout the book, but it just means that characters aren’t perfect. They were smaller aspects that didn’t ring true or consistent for me (and nope, I’m not including spoilers). There might have been a bit too much boy-craziness at times but hey, here's another fantastic thing: there are poems! They weren’t exactly swimming in heart-stopping prose, they reflected Jordan’s character and were a nice addition. Can I also add that yes, there is a teensy little love triangle that I wasn't put off by at all? Huge compliment, believe me.
Also, the football! She plays FOOTBALL, guys!! And NO, you don't need to know anything about football to enjoy this book because Kenneally has explored so many different themes in her debut that resonates, and it's books like this that keeps the standard for contemporary YA fiction so high. Okay, as I’m writing this review* I’m realizing I’m doing the book no justice and that it’s hard to explain the essence of awesome in this book, I really just think it’s one of those things that you should read for yourself.
Rating in HP Terms: Exceeds Expectations/Outstanding
Recommended for: contemporary YA fans, this doesn’t deal with those edgy, dark issues but it is just as good, I promise. Oh, and if you like cute boys and football (you don’t even have to like football, actually)
Acknowledgements: lovely!! 3.5/5
9/10 – because it kicked ass and looked awesome doing it. Catching Jordan is like a stress-reliever, and I think my frantic, panicked, and extremely stressed state of mind (when I was reading) that elevated my adoration for this novel. It was a great pick-me-up with an endearing heroine, loveable characters, cute boys, lots of swooning, a wonderfully complex but not too distressing main character, and a fast-paced and unique storyline. Totally lovely and totally recommended.
*and my review writing skills are unbelievably rusty… I’m so sorry! :(
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