I read this novel when I was in 6th grade and I was very much aware that its themes were more mature and real-world than the sports books that made up most of my reading. This book really helped turn me into a more discerning reader, and even at that early age, I could start to evaluate a work and appreciate it for its stylistic choices. The New York City setting was fascinatingly vivid to me and the first glimmerings of attraction to girls conicided with my own phase.
I teach English now and I would be curious to see how the book holds up today.
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