The Perfect Shot

>> Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Author: Elaine Marie Alphin
Recommended Age: Young Adult
Publisher: Lener Publishing Group
ISBN: 978-1-57505-862-7
Year Published: 2005
No. Pages: 360
Genre: Realistic Fiction
Main Character Gender: Male
Read & Reviewed by: Christian

What would you do if your girlfriend was shot to death only steps away from where you were shooting hoops and her father was accused of murder?

The Perfect Shot by Elaine Marie Alphin is the story of Brian, a high school senior, as he tries to make peace with himself after his girlfriend is murdered only a few houses down from him. When Brian is assigned a history project about a case of an innocent man charged for murder, he re-examines the day of the murder and remembers what seemed to be a minute detail at the time, but a detail that just might solve the case.

 Brian begins to question the justice system and when his best friend Julius is unfairly treated by the police, he questions it even more. He urges Julius to stand up and fight against the racist treatment he received. Brian discovers how life isn’t about right or wrong, black or white but that the justice system has many shades of gray.

I found this book very suspenseful because of how it’s written. When Julius became enraged at a basketball practice, I could visualize it very clearly because of the imagery and detail Alphin used in her writing. I also found this book had a lot of action. I think the author made a good choice by writing this book in first person because it helped in terms of a fast-moving plot needed in a mystery/thriller and because of the action-packed basketball scenes.

I particularly liked the basketball scenes because I’m a basketball player and a huge fan of the sport. I liked how Alphin described the games and the moves. It showed either how she know a lot about basketball or researched it to make the scenes believable.

Basketball fans will especially love this book, but all readers will find something to enjoy in this incredible read. This book is great for kids who are in grade 7 or older because it deals with issues of racism, violence, and justice.

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