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Reviewed by Christian Sia for Readers' Favorite
Choker by Bob Moseley is a brilliant coming-of-age novel that will have great appeal to sports fans, a novel that immerses the reader in the drama of high school. It follows sixteen-year-old Mark Chamberlain, a young man who has always dreamed of playing in a state basketball championship. He does get his chance to play, but what once was a dream suddenly becomes a haunting experience. He loses confidence as his performance becomes mediocre. His unsupportive father doesn’t make things any better for him. At school, Mark becomes the laughing stock of his peers. Humiliated and lacking self-confidence, only the support of a beautiful girl gives him hope. With another basketball season looming ahead, can he find the courage and enough fight in him to redeem himself this time?
Bob Moseley made me care about his protagonist. The narrative is done in a voice that touches different emotions in readers, at times it is smooth and confident, at times humorous. He allows the sarcasm to come out clearly. The narrative reminds readers of their high school days, of the bullying and of the stigma that some people experience in this challenging time. Mark is an interesting character, one that loses faith in himself—thanks to the derision of his peers. I enjoyed the way the author navigated the emotions of the protagonist, exploring factors that hurt his self-esteem and confidence. Themes of friendship, sports, and personal development are developed and in a very skillful way. Choker is written at a masterly pace and in captivating prose. A delightful read, indeed.