Title: The Off Season
Author: Catherine Gilbert Murdock
Life is looking up for D.J. Schwenk. She's in eleventh grade, finally. After a rocky summer, she's reconnecting in a big way with her best friend, Amber. She's got kind of a thing going with Brian Nelson, who's cute and popular and smart but seems to like her anyway. And then there's the fact she's starting for the Red Bend High School football team—the first girl linebacker in northern Wisconsin, probably. Which just shows you can't predict the future. As autumn progresses, D.J. struggles to understand Amber, Schwenk Farm, her relationship with Brian, and most of all her family. As a whole herd of trouble comes her way, she discovers she's a lot stronger than she—or anyone—ever thought. This hilarious, heartbreaking and triumphant sequel to the critically acclaimed Dairy Queen takes D.J. and all the Schwenks from Labor Day to a Thanksgiving football game that you will never forget (Goodreads.com).
What can I say? I really really like these books. They are so wholesome and good and well written. And I really enjoy reading these books from DJs point of view. Her voice is so clear and honest and really lets you know the emotional feeling of the story. I ended up reading this book in one sitting last night because I could not put it down, no matter how tired I was!
One of my favorite aspects of this story was the concentration on DJs family, even more so than in the first book. Not only do we get to discover new things about DJ herself, we also get to learn some pretty interesting stuff about DJs brothers too. I'm excited to see where Murdock takes these new developements in the third and final book in the trilogy: Front and Center (which thank God I got from the library the other day because I'd be really unhappy if I didn't have it to read!).
Oh and Brian...I just don't know what to think about him. I'm curious to see where he ends up in the third book, because things are not looking to great for him at the end of The Off Season. I still have a crush on him though :)