Cover Image: Ten Thousand Tries

Ten Thousand Tries

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Member Reviews

Golden has one dream: to become a powerful soccer hero like Lionel Messi. His family all loves soccer too, and when Golden finally achieves his dream of becoming the middle school soccer team captain, he's sure that he's ready to become a champion. Everyone keeps letting him know that it's okay to be upset about his dad, but Golden isn't bothered. After all, if Golden can win the soccer championship, Dad can beat ALS, right?

There are a lot of hard-hitting topics in this book. Golden has to deal with the start of puberty and all that entails while he discovers that being team captain is harder than it looks and that his friendships require hard work to ensure no one feels left out. He also has to grow up quickly as his dad's health slowly deteriorates, his sisters worry about death for the first time, and Mom needs more help around the house. I love the way Makechnie weaves together these thought-provoking topics without chopping up the action or glossing over details. Golden insists that he's fine--until he's not, and there's so much beauty in the way that he matures throughout the story. Once again, I struggle to imagine this book being the first choice for your average middle-grade reader, but in the right hands, this is such a powerful story and I know that there are kids out there waiting for just such a book to reassure them that they are not alone.
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It becomes pretty clear, early on, where this plot is headed. ALS is a terminal disease, so all it takes is a little knowledge to understand the degree of willful ignorance that Golden is engaging in. His determination to believe that he can fix his dad is a bit uncomfortable to read at times and if that were the primary focus I'm not sure I could have made it through this one. At the same time he's plotting cures, though, he's also learning what it means to be a leader and gradually accepting the changes in his family's life that come with his father's decline. There is a solid balance between the sports elements and the family trauma. A tough read but has some heart.
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Heartfelt middle grade novel about family, loss, friendship, and growing up quickly when a parent is diagnosed with a terminal illness.  Golden’s life is focused on his triplet friendship and his soccer skills until those two parts of his life struggle at the same time that his dad’s life is being diminished by ALS.  Filled with soccer references, this is a touching and thought-provoking novel that will bring a tear or two to the reader’s eye.
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Thank you Netgalley and Simon Kids for the gifted book!

It takes a lot to make me cry in a book, but this book made me cry more than once. It is so touching and sincere and yet full of love and hope. Golden's dad has been diagnosed with ALS and along with his three sisters and their mom, the Maroni family is learning to cope with all the changes this means for their family. Golden struggles to accept that the outcome of this disease is inevitable, and as a result is struggling in his friendships, in school, and even in his favorite thing, soccer. Full of fun sports scenes, some beautiful pictures of friendship, and some very vulnerable depictions of family life, this book is one I will recommend over and over.
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Ten Thousand Tries is a moving, heartwarming story about family, friendship, community, soccer, and the love of a father. This book artfully manages the delicate balance of real-life suffering with the humor we can find lurking in small, mundane moments. With engaging soccer scenes; warm, health friendship and family dynamics, this book is hard to put down. If you like books about soccer, families banding together, and books that make you laugh and cry, this is not one to miss.
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This book was so beautifully written. The world and characters felt so real. The depiction of ALS was hard to read sometimes, but it was so necessary. The events and situations Golden went through have stuck with me. During my reading I kept asking myself, "Why doesn't anyone understand what he's going through?" But that's just it. Everyone in his life understood all too well, they were just processing and grieving in their own way. I'm excited to read other books by this author, and definitely wouldn't mind a sequel to this one someday! #netgalley
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I greatly appreciate the opportunity to read and review this book. I cried, laughed, cried some more. This story is, in the words of Dr Rudine Sims- Bishop, a mirror for kids dealing with similar issues as Golden; and a window for others to “peek in” and gain awareness, insight, empathy. It’s a book about a boy who loves soccer, his friends, his family... and how he has to learn what it means to “be a man” and never give up. An incredibly written story, with authenticity, humor, and full of life. All the parts of it. Wish I can give this book more than 5 stars!
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What a positive book this was. As Golden deals with his dads’s ALS, his best friend, Lucy, possible moving, and being the smallest soccer player on his team he is always positive and upbeat. Golden learns to be a leader at home and on the field.  He realizes the game isn’t over until you stop fighting, whether it’s about Lucy moving, his team trying to get ready for the soccer championship, or his dad slowly getting worse. He knows you have to give  it everything you have. Great book.
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