From the Publisher
“There are a lot of very recognizable characters afoot, young and old, and O'Malley's cartoon-like drawings bring them into sharp focus. . . . Perhaps there will be thousands of soccer kids sitting their folks down and reading this lesson to them as a bedtime story.” Kirkus Reviews
“[A]n enjoyable read that will be welcomed by Miss Malarkey fans and could lead to productive discussions with children.” School Library Journal
“The text is well served by O'Malley's lively illustrations, which leaven a story about a subject of increasing concern to both parents and kids.” Booklist
An elementary school soccer team, the players' overbearing parents and one terrific teacher star in You're a Good Sport, Miss Malarkey by Judy Finchler, illus. by Kevin O'Malley, the fourth installment in the series. When the adults' antics get out of hand, Miss Malarkey enforces new rules (for grown-ups). (Sept.) Copyright 2002 Cahners Business Information.
School Library Journal
K-Gr 2-In this fourth entry in the popular series, the beleaguered teacher finds herself thrust into the role of school soccer coach. Neither she nor the children are particularly conversant in the game and there are some silly scenes as they get organized. Her real problem, though, is the spectators, who are a mix of disinterested, distracted, or obnoxious parents. As the season progresses and the team fails to win, the yelling from the stands becomes increasingly strident, and the children receive mixed messages from the adults around them. At one game, things get completely out of control, and Miss Malarkey finally loses it and yells: "Are you people crazy?" The game is canceled, and from that point on the children play for fun while their family members clap quietly and silently suck on lollipops. While the plot does realistically reflect the inappropriate behavior of many parents at children's sporting events, it is unfortunate that things are resolved by Miss Malarkey responding in kind rather than trying to take a more reasoned approach. There are numerous cartoon balloon asides, most of which are humorous. On the whole, this is an enjoyable read that will be welcomed by Miss Malarkey fans and could lead to productive discussions with children who find themselves in such situations.-Grace Oliff, Ann Blanche Smith School, Hillsdale, NJ Copyright 2002 Cahners Business Information.
Another installment in this ongoing author and illustrator collaboration (Testing Miss Malarkey, 2000, etc.) explores Miss Malarkey's sojourn as the new soccer coach. Proving anything can be tamed with beneficent intentions and a good instruction book, Miss Malarkey successfully cajoles the youngsters and their parents into a truly polite soccer league. There are a lot of very recognizable characters afoot, young and old, and O'Malley's cartoon-like drawings bring them into sharp focus. There's the kid who stands on the field and doesn't move, and then there is the phalanx of overbearing parents, who yell, scream, criticize, and pull their hair out. Miss Malarkey overrules them all. In the end though, will the humor here appeal more to soccer moms than to young soccer aspirants? Even if it were more interesting to them than a penalty kick, would it only pander to the young sardonic personality and fertilize little development? The message is to be a good sport so perhaps there will be thousands of soccer kids sitting their folks down and reading this lesson to them as a bedtime story. It couldn't hurt. (Picture book. 5-10)