Review: Roll

rollBook: Roll (2017)
Author: Darcy Miller
Genre: MG, Contemporary
Rating: 3.5 stars

Basic plot: Ren and his family have moved out of town to his grandma’s old farmhouse in the country. Under his dad’s guidance, he’s in training to run cross-country. During one early morning run, he meets Sutton, the (new) girl next door, and discovers that she’s training Birmingham Roller Pigeons. As Ren tries to find his footing (how to relate to the best friend he left behind, how to improve his run times, etc), he also finds himself drawn to Sutton and her pigeons. Now, if only he can get the courage to tell his dad that he doesn’t want to be a great athlete.

WHAT’S COOL…

1) The Birmingham Roller Pigeons were pretty cool. Had to look them up on youtube because I have never heard of this before.

2) I like the friendship that develops between Sutton and Ren, especially how they bond over the pigeons. And with the pigeons!

3) I enjoyed Ren’s voice in this book. I liked his nerdiness and how his narration showed that part of him.

4) The comic book thread was a fun aspect of the book. Ren is obsessed with old British comics, ones I’m not familiar with. But sure enough, when I looked them up online, I find that they do indeed exist. (I like how Ren and Sutton watch the old Adam West Batman show!)

5) I also liked how the whole cross-country running thing turned out. Ren’s dad is a runner and Ren expects that he needs to be a runner as well. And even though he tries, Sutton sees the truth. Ren just doesn’t quite LOVE running the way his dad does.

WHAT’S NOT COOL…

1) I had a hard time envisioning how Sutton was “training” her pigeons. I got how they flew, but what was she doing to actually “train” them?

2) Ren’s real name is Lauren, which he tells us (right away) that he hates. (I don’t blame him.) Then why does he introduce himself to several people as Lauren? Why not just say that his name is Ren. This did not make sense to me.

FINAL THOUGHTS

My rating is 3 Stars (out of 5) – I liked the book. The bit about the roller pigeons was pretty fascinating. Who knew that actually existed!


YOUR TURN…

Have you read this book? What are your thoughts? I’d love to hear your thoughts in the comments!

Note: I’m posting this for Greg Pattridge’s Marvelous Middle-Grade Monday

14 thoughts on “Review: Roll

  1. I was going to comment on this review but it was not on your page. I had to look up Roller Pigeons, all I could think of was roller derby and I pictured pigeons with roller skates and helmets !!! They are more like stunt or aerobatic pilots who do barrel rolls, etc. Very interesting. ~DH

    On Sun, Jan 26, 2020 at 2:41 PM Of Maria Antonia wrote:

    > ofmariaantonia posted: “Book: Roll (2017) Author: Darcy Miller Genre: MG, > Contemporary Rating: 3.5 stars Basic plot: Ren and his family have moved > out of town to his grandma’s old farmhouse in the country. Under his dad’s > guidance, he’s in training to run cross-country. During ” >

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Oh my gosh! I had to look it up on YouTube right after you mentioned doing it and this looks incredible and fun. How have I never heard of this?? I can’t wait to tell people about it. On a different note, I knew a Loren in high school. Spelled differently than the character here, but sounds the same.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. This sounds like a boy struggling to find out what he really wants to do with his life — and athletics isn’t for everyone. Realistic theme! Think all teens have their dreams — realistic or not — and eventually find their path. And, I would enjoy learning about Roller Pigeons. Looked them up – amazing!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. I think a lot of kids feel like they have to follow in their parents footsteps when they should really be developing their own passions. This sounds good and I’ll put it on my list. Thanks for telling me about it.

    Like

  5. Pingback: Winter Reading Bingo Challenge / January | Of Maria Antonia

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