Can blind people play sports? Sure, they can do anything they want to do. Edward Bogard, "Bogie" for short, sure thinks so, and he has been blind since the age of four. He can ride a bike, play the guitar, and even parasail. The one thing he has never tried is golfhis dad has never taken him to a golf course or driving range. When he meets his next-door neighbor, Birdie Andrews, he is astounded at the things that she cannot do. Not only can she not play the guitar, or parasail, or ride a bike, she is sure that she would be terrible at anything she tries. So instead of trying anything new, she stays home and creates little worlds in sculpture. Bogie is impressed when she shows him her model of the eight islands of Hawaii, where they live. He begins to teach her guitar chords, which are illustrated in the text, and eventually teaches her to ride a bike. But that is not all they do together. Bogie goes to a driving range with some school friends, and after he has hit a couple of balls they tell him that they cannot believe he has never played golf before. "Awesome" is the word that they use. When he tells his father about his experience, his reaction is that Bogie has been hustled. Birdie is not so sure. How can she help Bogie prove that he is a natural golfer? Simple! She'll be his coach! And he will win the amateur tournament, she is sure of ithe cannot fail to win. This is also an excellent picture of a loving father-son relationship. Highly recommended. 2006, Hyperion, Ages 8 to 12.
Gr 6-8-A sweetly told story about the budding friendship between two young people and their understanding of one another's differences. Bogie is a blind teenager with a lot of insight when it comes to taking chances, seeing the world, and eventually mastering the game of golf. Birdie has asthma and lacks the confidence even to ride a bike, until she finds her purpose: assisting Bogie with his game. When they consider the idea of entering a golf tournament, Bogie's family secrets are divulged, helping to clear up some of the mysteries surrounding his mother's death and his father's lack of interest in golf. This novel's appeal is enhanced by humorous, lively dialogue; the innocence of the main characters; and the positive portrayal of their relationship and disabilities. An interesting read.-Hope Marie Cook, Eastern Connecticut State University, Willimantic Copyright 2006 Reed Business Information.