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4.7 out of 5 stars
Catching Jordan
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
on 20 February 2012
Such a great comfort book for rainy days (like today here).

I looked at Catching Jordan with my "snarky eyes" - if there is such a thing - for a good part of it, to be honest.
First of all, a girl playing football?! How can you write a book about a girl playing football after DJ Schwenk in Dairy Queen and not expect to be mercilessly subjected to comparison with that winning series? Ok, the plots differ but, at the end of the day, they're both about the coming of age of two girls chasing their dreams.
Add to that a fairly predictable plot, a few clichés including a love triangle, a difficult father/daughter relationship and some mean cheerleaders and you got yourself the perfect recipe for imminent disaster - or the same, unmemorable old soup, at the very least.

Surprisingly, Catching Jordan is far from unmemorable, in my opinion. What makes it stand out from the mass of mediocrity and triteness?
Two things worked particularly well for me: characters and dialogues.

Jordan can definitely shake hands and go eat some wings with DJ, rest assured. Ok, she is probably the most oblivious girl ever to walk the planet in a few millennia in matters of the heart but, aside from that, her voice is real, funny, honest and even though I am not sure I can relate to a teen quarterback, she's one of those characters that are instantly likable, if only for the fact that she's not afraid to stand up for what she believes in. Plus, she's one of those girls that feel more comfortable hanging out with guys rather than with girls and with that I can totally relate.
Ok, let me clear my voice now... the real star of this book is, in fact, Sam Henry. Ty looks like Chace Crawford? Ty, WHO? This guy can easily compete for the swoon-worthy crush title any day of the year, as far as I'm concerned... I haven't liked a male (teen) character this much since Tucker Avery in Unearthly. Enough said.

But if you feel that might not be enough for you, let me assure you this book is also freaking hilarious. It's fun, fun, fun. Relaxing, refreshing, obviously light, there might have been a passage or two involving a fake baby that had me stifling my laughter not to wake the kids.

Of course it's also not perfect. Clichés and predictability aside, personally I thought Jordan got off the hook in a certain situation a little too easily for my taste. Still, I am sure this book will see a lot of readers satisfied and entertained; just look at the ratings.
Don't let yourself be misled by the footballish theme because, even though it is, in fact, about playing ball, it never gets too much or too technical. This is a 100% kick-back-and-relax kind of book.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on 19 February 2012
I absolutely loved this book, i had to forced myself to put it down at 2am to get some sleep or i would have been there all night.

I had seen this book on a reading list somewhere and thought i would give it a try, i didnt really hold out much hope for it as although i liked the idea i thought it would talk too much about football, and being from Scotland American football isnt that big over here so i thought i would get bored with constant references to a game i know nothing about. I was pleasantly surprised to find that although there is alot of football in it (well obviously that is the whole them of the book) i wasnt bored with it, Miranda Kenneallys writing is witty and interesting and she gives you just the right amount of detail and description to capture your attention but not to bored you with irrelevant facts.

I love the characters and the different relationships they all have, and i particularly like that its stepping away from the normal character stereotypes and that the main character in a football book is a girl, Jordan is a fantastic character and the friendships she has with her team just endear you to her more, but i think my favourite character has to be Sam Henry, hes funny, loyal and an all around nice guy, i liked him from the very beginning of the book and i had an invested interest in finding out if this go his way.

Jordan Woods is the local quarterback and a damn good one at that, all shes ever wanted is to play college football that is until the day Tyler Green walks into practice and threatens to steal her concentration, developing her first crush leaves her stressing out about kissing, being left alone with him and what her team will say if she suddenly starts acting like a girl. As she gets closer to Ty and they start dating, her best friend Sam Henry starts to drift away from her and her future college seems more interested in her for being a famous NFL players daughter than they are about her skills... What will Jordan do when everything she knows starts to change and will her future be all that she has imagined.

A fantastic first novel and i cant wait for the second, no doubt that i will also stuggle to put it down once i start.
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on 17 November 2013
I sadly felt myself skipping over sections of this book after I got half way, it just did not grab and hold my attention like I hoped it would. The cover is bright and eye-catching, with a strong presence of sport; this, as you know, is the key aspect in this story. But, I can't help but be jealous by how tanned they both are! Because, you see, me getting a tan is like a vampire getting a tan... Does. Not. Work.

Jordan is the only girl on her american football team, and is also the captain and quarterback. And her team mates are more like her brothers. But when the handsome Ty turns up, Jordan just can't help herself. However, she must keep her head in the game and not get distracted, otherwise she won't get her rightful place at a powerhouse university.

Jordan was an okay character. She was someone who did get on my nerves a little, however she was a character whom you could just easily read about. What I really liked about her was how her character was very unique and original which I jumped with joy about. I LOVED, the characters of JJ, Henry and Carter, they were just your typical fun and loving people that really stitched the story together and gave me parts of the book to look forward to and laugh out loud about (these are the moments where you begin to snort-out-loud uncontrollably) Additionally, they were all three characters who were refreshing to read about. The idea of the book was okay, I express it as a light read with cliches. So after reading the blurb I was really looking forward to starting this book and find out which path Jordan was going to take.

But... I really, strongly disliked the character of TY! He was just really annoying. I know a lot of people who loved him but... no. He was cute, but a little weak. I felt like everything that came out his mouth was to make us feel sorry or think he was adorable and shy or something along those lines.

The storyline and the way the plot was heading I felt just did not grip me, my attention was just floating somewhere else.
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on 7 September 2013
I have to start this review with several disclaimers, and some possible offense (all meant in good fun, I swear) to fans of American Football. I've never watched a game of American Football, nor do I have any desire to. Australian's have their own game of football - and we often make fun of the American version - our players don't wear any padding, and as I understand it, play a far more physical game. And I LOVE Australian football - I've gotten up at 6am on Sunday's to watch finals (for me, that's a whole lot of love). So going into Catching Jordan, I was a little bit wary of the fact that the plot is set around a sport I have no interest in or understanding of. So if I haven't offended you yet, read on ;-)

I'll fully admit I completely skimmed over all the football references in Catching Jordan. And perhaps this is why I didn't enjoy the book as much as everyone else in the world appears to have - it could be that I missed something elemental to the plot or character development that a reader who likes, or at least understands American football would have picked up on.

As far as contemporary YA goes, Catching Jordan worked in some ways for me, and in others it fell a little short of the mark. I'm not the most open-minded person when it comes to contemporary YA, and most of my reading of that genre is 'issues' books, and whilst Catching Jordan talks about the issue of females in sport, and the difficulties they face in gaining acceptance from some men, and women, it doesn't go completely into the dark depths of sexism in sport.

One thing I found very difficult to swallow was the relationship between Ty and Jordan. Yes, I get that he was cute, but for a girl who seems to pride herself on being on the of the boys and not easily swayed by attractive boys, Jordan was pretty easily distracted, and hooked in by him. And I didn't like Ty much at all - I found him to be possessive, un-charming and a bit of a dick. Although Ms. Kenneally gives some background information that hints at why his behaviour was a certain way, I didn't find it excusable, and I lost a lot of respect for Jordan as a character that she couldn't see through the flimsy excuses.

What I did love about this book however, was the embracing of a girl being one of the guys - I loved Jordan's interactions with her friends and teammates, and to me those relationships really felt genuine and believable. I also enjoyed Jordan's changing relationship with her father, the quiet support of her mother and her own journey as she started to realise the realities of life.

Catching Jordan was a fun, quick read, that despite my complete lack of knowledge of the game of American Football and a relationship that pissed me off, I enjoyed far more than I thought I would. I'm never going to be a contemporary YA lover, particularly where there are no intense, dark issues involved, but I did enjoy this quite a bit.
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on 16 August 2013
Although not the greatest fan of sports... okay, I pretty much hate sports, I was really looking forward to reading a young adult book about the subject. Not only that, it was really different for a book with football as the main theme to have a female protagonist. This really isn't something you see a lot of in young adult books so I was ready to read something different and new.

Jordan was a fantastic protagonist. She's captain of her school's football team, the only girl on the team and the quarterback as well. If all of that wasn't enough to make her awesome, she is also better than most of the guys on the team and isn't afraid to boss them about and show them who is boss. Seriously, Jordan kicked ass. Jordan is also someone who is super smart, makes good grades and tells it how is really is. If any of the guys beat on her for being a girl, or for anything else, she puts them right back in their place.

I really enjoyed watching Jordan and her team/ friends interact. It was slightly strange to see Jordan boss everyone around and for her to have the respect of the whole team. People didn't second guess her judgement at any time and knew that she was doing the best things for the team. They were also a great bunch to read about off the field as well. As a team, the characters were really close so it was nice to see them all going out together, talking about relationships and sex etc. and for Jordan to have people she could go to if she needed to.

When new student Ty turns up, everything changes for Jordan. She's having feelings for a guy which is something pretty new to her but also, he plays the same position as she does and wants on the team. Jordan instantly likes what she sees in Ty but soon has a decision to make. Ty is also a quarterback and desperately wants on Jordan's team but she knows playing in every game is the only way that she'll get the scholarship that she wants. While she finally thinks she has found someone to be in a relationship with, Jordan also doesn't want him ruining her future and taking the spotlight away from her.

While I loved the majority of this book, Jordan and Ty's relationship was a bit hit and miss for me. While the chemistry between the two was great, some things just did not add up. Jordan is a pretty inexperienced girl but it doesn't take her very long at all to do things with Ty. When I say not long at all, it appeared to happen within a matter of days, maybe a week or so. For someone who has stayed away from relationships with boys, and hasn't ever had a boyfriend, this was just too much. Jordan's actions also didn't seem to match her personality which was a shame.

Although Jordan and Ty together was not great, I did still really enjoy this book. The plot and setting were fantastic and there are some great little twists thrown in throughout the book. Overall, this one was pretty good.
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on 4 October 2012
I was really excited to read Catching Jordan! I love the idea of more stories which feature female athletes. Especially female athletes that compete in a sport in which men usually dominate, such as American football. I'm not the biggest fan in the world of American football, but I've been exposed to it quite a bit over the years through TV and films. I did sort of go into Catching Jordan hoping that it was similar to Friday Night Lights but with a female quarterback. ...but it isn't. That isn't to say that it isn't enjoyable and that it doesn't provide a thought-provoking story about women in sports. It does.

But something about it also grated on me slightly. There's no way the main character of this book, Jordan, would ever wear a mini-skirt and tank top like the girl on the cover. Because Jordan is all about what other people think of her, especially her team mates. She doesn't like to show too much skin, she has rules about not dating any of her teammates. Because what she really wants is some proper respect - from her teammates, her father, and from universities that she's hoping to go to soon and play some college ball. I think what I didn't like about this book is Jordan herself. I wasn't too keen on her as a character, I didn't quite agree with a lot of the decisions that she made. My favourite aspect of the novel is the friendship and cameraderie that Jordan has with her friends and the other football players on her team. I liked that dynamic much more than Jordan's struggles with her family and university prospects or the way in which she's undecided about her feelings for new boy Ty. Interesting and enjoyable, but not my favourite.
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Catching Jordan is part high school romance story, part sport story and part coming-of-age story. It's funny and warm.

Jordan is the high school quarterback. She's the captain of the team and she happens to be a girl. She's a girl in a guy's world and she is quite happy there. As she comes to the end of her high school year and the championship, she's looking to impress the coaches at Alabama - the best football college in the country - but when a new guy joins her team, she loses her focus and maybe her position on the team too.

I really liked Jordan. It's so refreshing to see a different portrayal of a teenage girl. She's determined and a leader. She's physically strong and a fantastic athlete. She may spend her days surrounded by guys on the team but when it comes to romance, she's rather clueless. Her best friend Henry is such an adorable character. He was supportive and at times a complete bozo. How can you fail to love that in a guy?! Ty was annoying. I really had no sympathy for him - even though he wasn't really a bad guy, just over-protective and paranoid.

The plot is fast-paced and I felt like I read the book so quickly. It's incredibly readable. I know that sounds bizarre but it was like as soon as you opened it, you were right there next to the characters. It had an immediacy which comes with great writing and demonstrates that you can write in the past tense and still make the reader feel like the events are happening now.

I didn't entirely understand the American Football references but that was ok but the characters knew what they were talking about so I felt I could just go with it. Plus because I'm watching Friday Night Lights I could picture it and all the "Red Twenty-five. Blue seventeen" or whatever it is they say. It certainly didn't detract from my enjoyment and I really liked the physicality of the book. It felt visceral and raw in a good way.

Overall, a sweet romance. It's a story about not being ashamed of who you are and what you dream about becoming. Catching Jordan is uplifting and inspiring. A great read.
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on 10 April 2012
This is my first review so here goes...
Okay, so when I first bought this book I was a bit apprehensive to read it since it appeared to focus a bit on football and I have no knowledge on football at all but after the first page I knew my first impression was beyond wrong. I mean yeah it features parts about football considering the main characters are football players but it's not all about football like I thought it would be.

Catching Jordan is by far one of the best books i have ever read and i read a lot of books. It is well written, the characters are believable as is the storyline.

Jordan Woods is the starting quarterback for her high school football team but she is the only girl on the team. She's treated like one of the guys and it seems like that's the way she likes to be: all her best friends are guys.
When the new guy at school, Ty Green, looks like he could take her position on the team, since he is also a pretty amazing quarter back, she gets worried but she soon realizes there is nothing to worry about, position wise anyway. Ty doesn't seems like he is really interested in the position but more interested in Jordan herself. And that's when things get complicated.

As much as I liked Jordan's character, my favourite character was Jordan's best friend Sam Henry (or Henry as he is mainly referred by.) He was funny, sweet, kind etc. I loved how he and Jordan had such a strong friendship. I'm not ashamed to say I kind of fell in love with Sam a little bit. I would love a best friend like him!

Now no teen book would be complete without a love triangle of some sort and this book certainly didn't disappoint on that front. the Ty, Jordan and Sam triangle almost had me in tear. Especially when Jordan found out Sam liked her as more than a friend and she realised she liked him as well. Sam rejects her since she is dating Ty and acts a bit like an idiot, ignoring her in school, not being there for her when she needed him but he more than made up for it.

I won't say anymore because I don't want to ruin it for people that haven't read it but honestly if you're unsure whether to read it or not i would say go for it, it really is such an amazing book and you'll definitely read it again!
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on 5 March 2012
This was nothing short of amazing and made me feel a lot better after having read two rather disappointing books. I also have some cover love here; it's simple but sweet at the same time.

Jordan Woods is the quarterback of her high school football team; the only girl. The guys on the team respect her for her amazing talent and leadership skills, and she's got big football dreams for college. Enter Ty Green: former quarterback of his high school team back in Texas, he's just moved here and now he's threatening her position on the team.

I loved this book so much, it's a new favourite. It was a kind of different read because it involved sports and I have very limited knowledge of American football. However, this wasn't an issue. Miranda Kenneally explained along the way, and managed to not make it boring. Jordan was also a brilliant character; she was strong, a good leader and she wasn't afraid to say what she was thinking in front of the guys on her team. She also had a great sense of humour and this made the book laugh-out-loud funny. Jordan also grew as a character, especially regarding her college decisions and how she wasn't going to let anyone and control her. She had real ambition and focus when it came to football, which I really admired about her. I also really liked how the whole team was like a big family. They all looked after each other and looked out for each other. They weren't afraid to be themselves in front of each other and weren't afraid to mention touchy subjects, which again made for some hilarious reading. It really made me want to part of the gang. Jordan's best friend, Sam Henry (simply referred to as Henry) was definitely my favourite character. He was funny and sweet, and I admired the strong bond that he and Jordan had; their friendship was sweet in general. The love triangle was also done really well here, and I understood Jordan's frustration. However, for me, it was a no contest. I knew who I wanted Jordan to end up with and the ending left me with a smile on my face. Overall, this book was awesome because Jordan was badass and proved that a girl can take down a guy any day, regardless of gender, and the book also had a real family feel with lots of humour. I loved it!
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on 20 February 2012
Who would have thought that football + romance could mix? Well, definitely not me! Miranda proved me wrong. Catching Jordan is a beautifully written novel, full of charming characters and emotional situations.

Jordan, the captain of the football team, also the best QB in the state, until Ty Green shows up. Jordan thinks she's strong and invincible, she knows that if she shows emotion no body will take her seriously. Before she knows what's happening, she begins falling for Ty.

But there's something wrong, her best friend, Sam Henry, the boy who's been Jordan's best friend for ten years, has started ignoring her. I really like Henry, he's such a great guy! Who wouldn't want a guy who shoved his feet in your face while your sleeping? Talking about sleeping...I can't beleive Jordan's parents are cool with Henry sleeping in her bed?! Even if they have been friends for a VERY long time, it's just so strange. My parents would NEVER let me do that. Jordan? Lucky girl.

I could really feel Jordan's fustration when her dad never turned up for any of her games, but he always turned up for her brother's? How unfair! She trains hard, yet her dad doesn't surport her. In the end, I'm glad he made an effort. I liked Jordan's mum, she's very nice and doesn't seem to butt in when you don't want her too. She sounds like a good mother, a great role model, that Jordan didn't seem to follow!

Ty, I was CRAZY about him at the start, but as the story went on I could feel Jordan loosing interest and so did I. He can be a great guy at times but he's too controlling. Jordan needs someone who can stand by her side not pull the strings. Being told what to do when your the captain of the football team does NOT go well.

I loved everything about this book! I couldn't put it down. Two chapters in? I'm hooked. Couldn't put it down, I loved it, loved it, loved it, loved it!

Catching Jordan is Miranda's debut novel, the companion to CJ is called Stealing Parker, releasing in 2012. I can't wait to read it! Here is the blurb so far: About a 17-year-old girl named Parker who falls for the new 23-year-old coach of the baseball team. Forbidden romance type of thing, that's my kinda book! Overall, Catching Jordan is a brilliant book that EVERYONE should read. All YA readers will fall in love with the amazing characters and enjoyable plot.
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