Author: Miranda Kenneally
Publisher: Sourcebooks Fire
Release Date: December 1, 2011
Number of Pages: 281
Source of Book: Requested from publisher at NCTE because I loved the cover and premise and really wanted to read it.
What girl doesn't want to be surrounded by gorgeous jocks day in and day out? Jordan Woods isn't just surrounded by hot guys, though - she leads them as the captain and quarterback on her high school football team. They all see her as one of the guys, and that's just fine. As long as she gets her athletic scholarship to a powerhouse university. But now there's a new guy in town who threatens her starring position on the team... and has her suddenly wishing to be seen as more than just a teammate.CATCHING JORDAN is a cute contemporary romance with a unique twist. Overall, I really enjoyed reading this book, and Jordan is a refreshing character who tells it like it is and doesn't put up with crap from the boys who she is surrounded by as she is the quarterback of the football team. It's a unique setup for some high school drama, and drama definitely ensues with football and relationships and friendships and family, but it all seemed very realistic. Jordan's relationship with her mom and brother and guys on the football team was fun to read, but there is strain with her dad, who happens to be a pro football player, but doesn't seem to want her to play. Then there is the fact that Jordan's only friends seem to be the guys on the team, as the cheerleaders are pretty nasty to her and she feels like she doesn't have anything in common with other girls. The thing that was interesting about Jordan was how much she seems to be in control of everything, and is honest in her narration, but isn't able to see what's really in front of her. Of course, that seems to be pretty typical for teens as they are pretty much focused on themselves in their own little world. But, as Jordan grows throughout the book and starts to realize more of what's around her, I began to like her even more. She started to realize what was really important to her and what she needed to be able to live with herself and as herself. This led her to start advocating for herself more and to her making decisions that were right for her.
As much as I enjoyed it, I had a little bit of an issue with this book because of Jordan. It's mostly a personal preference type of thing, I think, but I had a hard time believing that this girl, who had never even kissed a boy before Ty showed up, was willing to sleep with him so quickly after they got together. I was fine with the insta-attraction (I get the crush thing) and even the love triangle element and her being clueless to part of it, but this one thing stuck with me. In her narration she gives all the guys on the team a hard time for sleeping around, and doesn't want to get a reputation, which I completely understand, but I guess it just seemed a little bit out of character for her to go so far so quickly. It could just be me, and the fact that I'm a teacher, but I didn't see any realistic, emotional consequences to that choice. But, they did at least use protection.
Overall, this was an enjoyable, fun, straight-forward contemporary read. I especially liked the added element of the creative writing that Jordan comes to discover she enjoys. As she starts journaling to get her feelings out since she can't talk to anyone about them (can totally relate to that!), Miranda made the choice to include some of the poems Jordan has written in between chapters. It was a unique and interesting choice by the author to allow the reader to get more insight into Jordan's feelings even as she was unable to tell them to use herself. I also have to add that I loved the secondary characters. The guys on the team who are her best friends are so hilarious with how they treat her, especially when she wants to talk relationships, and how protective they are of her. And I especially liked her older brother and what a great relationship they had. The ending was just perfect for this type of book with all of the elements - her dad, her choice of college, her boy situation, and her friendships - coming together as I had hoped they would.