"Surely the only thing worse that being terrible
at sports is having an older brother or sister
who is a fantastic athlete. When you have a
sibling, there's always someone to compare
Marisol is better than Oz at some things - like
not being annoying and not making a mess in the
kitchen - but sometimes Marisol wishes she was
more like Oz."
As if she doesn't have enough to worry about already, Coach Decker announces that a two-week kickball unit is next in gym class. To say Marisol does not like gym is understating it. It is her least favorite thing. Her family and friends know it. Her best friend Jada shares her feelings about kickball. There is nothing to be done about it.
Constant thoughts and worries (which Marisol dubs The Brain Train) plague her as they first practice, and then play their first game. Marisol has no doubt that she will be bad at it - she is right. Finally, in desperation, she and Jada ask for help from Marisol's brother Oz, a star soccer player. Oz does his best to help. He offers one particular piece of advice - 'keep you eye on the ball at all times'. It encourages Marisol to play her game with a bit more confidence despite a setback or two.
Fans of the initial book about Marisol will be delighted to welcome her back. Many readers will identify with the concerns she has about gym, mean girls, family, and friendship. The books introduce an engaging cast of characters who strengthen the story and give it an emotionally honest feel. Short illustrated chapters celebrate this insecure young girl who gains confidence through determination. Full of heart, it will leave fans eagerly awaiting #3!