Glenn Maxwell: Lucky Break
Glenn Maxwell: Academy All Stars
Glenn Maxwell: State Showdown
Glenn Maxwell: World Domination
Random House 2014
192pp., RRP $A14.99
The 2014-2015 cricket season is well and truly here…the South Africans have come and gone; Australia has regained the Border-Gavaskar Cup, the Big Bash winner has been decided and now the focus is on the ICC World Cup . And the nation’s heartfelt response to the death of Phillip Hughes with the #putoutyourbats tribute has put our national summer game in the minds of all Australians like never before.
So what better way to entice young cricket fans, both boys and girls, to read than with a series which focuses on Glenn Maxwell, the world’s leading T20 player? When Maxwell was a kid all he read was books and magazines about cricket and his aim with this series is to inspire young cricketers not only to play cricket but also to read. Co-authored with Patrick Loughlin, these books fill the bill perfectly. They are very readable, even by those who may not yet have fine-tuned their reading skills as well as their cricket skills, and the girls are certainly not ignored.
In Lucky Break readers are introduced to Will who is captain of his local cricket team and a batting wonder. But he has a hard lesson to learn when he attends a T20 training camp and finds out that it’s hard to stand out when all around you are equally as talented. With hero Glenn Maxwell’s help, he learns to handle Killer McKinnon’s bouncers as well as a lot about himself as a person, as he works hard to earn a place at the T20 Youth Academy.
In Academy All-Stars we get an insight into the tough regime of an aspiring young cricketer and learn that it’s more than just being able to bat or bowl well. If you want to play for your state, you need to show you can handle life as well as cricket, even if that means having to compete against your best friend.
Both books will have the reader eagerly anticipating State Showdown and World Domination that have just been published.
Each book includes Maxwell’s Top Tips for T20 batting and a full glossary of cricket terms and colleague Sue Warren has a Q&A with Glenn Maxwell himself.
Cricket fans will be hit for six with this series.
In State Showdown the series continues Will Albright’s journey from local team to state representation which is his dream. But a crisis in confidence threatens his success and so Maxwell steps into help. And finally, in World Domination his team is off to England to take on the best of the best in the T20 Youth World Cup. Each book includes Maxwell’s Top Tips for T20 batting and a full glossary of cricket terms.
Even though the books themselves are written for an independent reader about Year 3-4 level, a number of the names on my reserves list are both older and younger, showing that the subject is the key ingredient and that having enjoyed the first two it is the storyline that brings them back, not any degree of difficulty with the text.
If you haven’t got the first two – Lucky Break and Academy All-Stars – then it is worth seeking them out so when students’ thoughts turn to playing cricket as summer comes, you will have a complete series to offer them.