Catching Jordan

Catching Jordan - Miranda Kenneally Very good. A few things kept if from being great.

Jordan Woods has football literally in her blood. Her dad is an NFL Quarterback, her brother is a college football star, and Jordan herself - despite being a girl - has the best record of any quarterback in the state of Tennessee. Jordan is such a great player, she fully expects to move on to play college-level ball on a full-ride scholarship with the prestigious U. of Alabama football program which has been courting her recently. In addition to being her passion in life, playing football has supplied Jordan with a posse of guy buddies who range from protective, adorable meatheads to her best friend for life, Sam Henry. The way Jordan sees it, the world of football is pretty much perfect.

When Tyler Green arrives as the new guy at school, he rocks Jordan's world. First of all, he's hotter than hot, and Jordan finds herself attracted to the guy in a most inconvenient way since it distracts her from football. Ty also causes conflict because he's a stellar quarterback who threatens to take Jordan's position away. But as Ty and Jordan grow closer and Jordan's romantic feelings begin to awaken, she starts to see her best friend Henry in a whole new way. She begins to wonder if the best thing for her has been under her nose all along.

I liked Jordan because she was very driven and competitive and didn't expect any special treatment just because she was a girl. Her hurt over the fact that her father seemed completely disinterested in her football career was well explored. That said, Jordan frustrated me to no end because it became so clear that Alabama had no intention of actually letting her play football and planned only to use her as some kind of poster girl for publicity and recruitment purposes. Yet Jordan clung to her dream of playing for Alabama and simply wouldn't see the truth in front of her.

Too, for such a tough, fierce girl, Jordan cried a lot. A lot. And not just tears in her eyes, but tears dripping into the river levels of crying. If her crying was intended to show that deep inside, Jordan really did have the feelings of a girl, it didn't succeed so much as make her look emotionally fragile, and not in a vulnerable way but in a needs medication way.

My second issue with the book was with Jordan's best friend, Henry. I suppose high school boys often act in completely irrational ways, but Henry's behaviour once Jordan began dating Ty became downright bizarre. I wanted Jordan to smack him upside of the head and tell him to stop being such a major jerk.

All in all, the author did a great job of selling the concept of a girl star quarterback as a reality. I did have some questions, like what was the likelihood that a man old enough to have a son in college would still be able to play NFL football, the way Jordan's dad still does. Also, despite Jordan's success on the Tennessee high school football circuit, I simply could never believe that she'd ever be allowed to play college level football.

This said, the book kept me turning pages wondering what Jordan would do. She's a very likable heroine. I also liked the kind of off-hand behind the scenes look at what it might be like to be the child of a professional sports star. Jordan lives a life of luxury and sits in the owner's box for NFL games, but to her, it's just her dad's job. No big deal. That was kind of cool.