Posted in 4 paws, fiction, Review, women on August 31, 2016

from the sideline

Series:  The Wake-Up Series
Series Number: 2
Edition: First
Pages: 266
Author: Amy Avanzino


After losing her marriage, life savings, and waistline, Autumn Kovac is terrified of being hit by more heartache. So when her only child decides to try out for the football team, the overprotective, sports-illiterate mom has a near phobic reaction. But Zachary hasn’t smiled since his father left, and she’s desperate to make him happy (and doing nothing and hoping for the best hasn’t been working). She reluctantly enters a new world of youth competitive sports, full of overzealous coaches with Vince Lombardi dreams and fanatical parents trying to achieve vicarious glory.

Unexpectedly, Autumn begins transforming within this strangely addictive new culture, finding her voice, facing her past, tackling her fears…and uncovering the secret that’s been keeping her from her son. After meeting her ideal catch, she finds herself back in the dating game and discovers some fierce competition of her own. Will Autumn make it off the sideline? Can the underdog finally win?


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I wasn’t sure I was going to like this book…for the first 10-11 chapters I wanted to reach in and slap Autumn and tell her that she is the reason her son is the way he is and to stop coddling him! That is what is wrong with a lot of parents/kids today.

But around chapter 12, something happened to turn the story around. Something happened in Autumn’s life to make her realize that perhaps letting her son live a little would be a good thing and that maybe letting him experience whatever happens in Little League Football will rewarding in the long run. Yes he is 10, but that is not too early for him to start learning that life can be hard and it is what you make of it.

Now granted, Autumn had a tough life growing up and perhaps this is why she appeared to smother Zachary, she didn’t want him to have the life that she had and anything would be better.

Autumn grows a lot as a person in this book and even finds her backbone. I love a scene where she is defending herself to her friends and takes shots at their parenting skills. I think everyone learned something that day! Zachary even grows up some (as much as a 10 year old should at that age) and learns a few hard lessons himself.

Having this book as a part of the “wake up call” series is very apropos. I think a few people received a wake up call in this book!

We give this 4 paws up!


About the Author

amy avanzinoAmy Avanzino received a Bachelor’s degree from UC Berkeley and a Master’s from the University of Washington.  She is a former advertising executive, who has spent the last several years writing, while doing extensive hands-on research for her WAKE-UP series.  She’s a contributing writer of Hap Scotch, a play performed at the 2008 Frigid Festival in New York, which won two Audience Choice Awards.

Amy currently lives in the stands above the football fields, basketball courts, and baseball diamonds around Folsom, California, with her husband and four children.

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