Michael Balkind is the author of the Deadly Sports Mysteries as well as other novels. His novels are endorsed by literary greats including James Patterson, Clive Cussler, John Lescroart, Wendy Corsi Staub & Tim Green. He has appeared on ESPN's The Pulse and Sportsnet's Daily News Live and was featured on the cover of Publishers Weekly. He has co-hosted and is a regular guest on The Clubhouse radio show. He is a member of Mystery Writers of America and The Metropolitan Golf Writers Association. Balkind graduated from Syracuse University and currently resides in New York.
Gold Medal Threatby Michael Balkind
When Casey and Johnny overhear assassins discussing “taking out” an Olympic gymnast just prior to the Olympic Opening Ceremonies, they team up with Chelsea and Samantha, and attempt foil the crime. Suspense, action and lots of fun combine as the team puts their lives in harms way to identify and stop the assassins, before it’s too
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When Casey and Johnny overhear assassins discussing “taking out” an Olympic gymnast just prior to the Olympic Opening Ceremonies, they team up with Chelsea and Samantha, and attempt foil the crime. Suspense, action and lots of fun combine as the team puts their lives in harms way to identify and stop the assassins, before it’s too late.
“Gold Medal Threat is finely crafted and suspenseful, and gives kids an insider’s look at the Olympic Games like no other story out there!” Tim Green, New York Times Bestselling Author & former NFL Defensive End
"Truly a wonderful read. My niece wrote a review and based on that i decided to read Gold Medal Threat. Great story that is good for a reader of any age. Easily one of the best books i read this year." Earl Miller
“Gold Medal Threat is one of those books that puts a big smile on your face and makes your day better. I truly recommend it to everyone, at every age. I bet my grandma would love it too, because you can’t dislike a book like this. It’s so much fun! I loved it!” Bianca M. Calin (age 14)
“This book is very thrilling and filled with suspense, mystery, and action. A great novel for kid mystery fans. Humor is twisted inside every chapter. The author takes you on a journey with many twists and turns. The main characters are likable, smart, funny, and resourceful. I loved every chapter.”Jacob Tabs (age 11)
- Michael Balkind
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Casey Clark and his best friend, Johnny Scott, are on their way to the Olympic Games in Australia. Casey’s dad, Reid, is one of the participants, as are many of the boys’ friends from AllSport, “a unique, high-end sports training facility, … the heart of the Inner City Sports Foundation”. After their first night there, suffering from jet lag and sleep-deprivation, the boys hit the hotel gym to work off their energy. There, they overhear a conversation that will permanently alter their experiences–changing them from mere observers to a couple of boys whose actions and observations may be the only things that will save someone’s life. With the help of Johnny’s dad, Jay (Reid’s bodyguard and ex-Navy SEAL), the local police, and two girls who stumble into the situation, the boys work hard on solving the mystery while at the same time keeping thousands of fans, media, athletes, and coaches from going into a headlong panic. For anyone who cut their teeth on reading The Hardy Boys and Nancy Drew mysteries, here is a novel that will rival anything those kids did. For this book is pretty much what would have happened if the authors of those two series ever got together. These modern-day boys, though, have a lot more going for them–mainly the wonders of the Internet. It doesn’t hurt matters that Jay has cooperative friends in low places who are willing to help him ferret out information. The Nancy Drews of this book–Samantha and Chelsea–are as cheeky and adventurous as the gal I compare them with. Daring and bold, without trepidation (mostly), they are quick to jump into the spying and follow-the-suspects game. Red herrings, false turns, dead ends–everything you would expect from a terrific mystery–are all here. This was a fantastic page-turner, all the more so because the adults don’t turn a blind eye to what the boys tell them. These kids are known to be honest, and their observances are taken seriously by all. What a great, refreshing change! Young adults, and all mystery lovers, will love this story. I’m going to find more of Mr. Balkind’s work to read–he is definitely an author extraordinaire.
I just finished reading Gold Medal Threat. A suspenseful plot, lots of dialogue, intriguing sleuthing, potential romance, and teenaged heroes and heroines made this mystery hard to put down. Without a couple of grammatical errors, I would have rated this a five for young teens and preteens. I enjoyed it myself as well. MarriottCole1
This book was a great read as it followed Casey and Johnny as they acted like detectives to catch killers to save a gymnast life. I recommend this book for others to pick up and read.
This story had me go back in time to the books I read when I was about the age my son is now (12 y), and I have to confess it's a great read even for an adult. Like with all books for younger children, some parts are not very logical, but you have to be able to have two young boys that play hero and get away with almost anything in these stories. The number of stars comes from the idea my son had about the book, he said there was far too much sports in there, and he doesn't like sports in books (he's more a nature type, and likes to run and walk, but not watching sports). But he liked the story and the way the boys made easily friends with others, also with the girls. He was glad it had a happy ending and everybody was ok with the outcome. All in all a book you would tell others to read, well balanced and with just the right amount of action to keep the interest of young readers and their parents!
"Gold Medal Threat" by Michael Balkind is a murder mystery set at the Olympic Games in Australia. There is a minor connection to Balkind's previous novels in that Casey, one of the main characters is the son of Reid Clark, detective and sportsman in previous Balkind novels. Reid Clark runs a sports club called AllSports and some of the athletes at the Olympics have trained at that club back in the US. Not long before the Olympics Casey and his friend Johnny overhear by chance parts of a conversation between two assassins about a murder plot aimed at one of the gymnasts. However, our heroes do not know which one of the athletes is targeted and they are not certain they could identify the assassins. The book becomes a battle against time to identify the victim and the murderers before it is too late. This is aimed mostly at the young adult market but has is just as enjoyable for grown ups. I am far from the target age group but really loved the book. Balkind loves his sport and proves this with the knowledgeable description of some of the sports events. The story moves along in a great pace, as befitting to young adult novels this book is less dramatic than its predecessors and more of a fun and adventure read then a gruesome or terrifying thriller. Having said that it is still great suspense, cleverly plotted and just like Balkind's other books entertainment. The boys also get close to two young athlete girls, adding more interest and spice to this already colourful great book. "Gold Medal Threat" confirms the author's versatility which was already shown in is second book, "Dead Ball", which so decisively was written in a different style to "Sudden Death". This must be my favourite book of the three published so far as it is at times very playful and light hearted. The ball is back in Balkind's court to show where his writing takes us next. I will be waiting in anticipation. A well deserved 5 stars out of 5.
I received this book from the author for an honest review. Wow was I surprised by this story. I am not a sports buff in the least and worried that I would find this book hard to get through. I was so wrong! This book was not only engaging but the characters were so alive and believable that you felt as though you were right along side them throughout the entire story. The story was so well written it was like watching a movie inside your head. I know this book is geared towards the male YA readers but I think that anyone who loves a good mystery will enjoy this book. It is fresh, has a unique story line and brings in enough suspense, mystery, and intrigue that you won't want to put the book down until it is done. A few twists will keep it action packed, humor keeps it light and of course there is a bit of boy meets girl without being overly romantic. So don't worry boys it isn't a sappy romance at all! A great read and one I highly recommend.
Winces holding her side. Good kick she muttered