Written by A. M. Jenkins
I went into reading this very skeptical. A football book? Why would I ever want to read a football book? Amazon and several other sites recommended it though, so I did get it and read it. It started out a little flat. I was still reeling over the whole football thing. The first person narration was a little off-putting. Things weren't great. Typical jock, typical girl, typical story, blahblahblah. Or...you know, not. I started getting interested upon getting a better explanation about Curtis, a surprisingly sensitive football player. I still had my doubts, mentally ranting about how stupid it was that society forced football players to put on a perfect "image", still feeling that these boys were pathetically weak for not showing their emotions. (This, actually, was the one thought that stayed through the entire book. The rest were all disproven.) Going into the second half, things aren't as perfect as they seem. There are some crude moments, but realistic and essential ones. The facade is lifted and everyone's lives have been damaged. It was Austin's conversation with his mom that really won me over, leading in to one of the best endings I've ever had the pleasure of reading. The emphasis on football died down, and more and more of the book focused on the characters' lives and emotions, the interesting stuff. Simply amazing. As Austin's interest in life fades, the intensity of the book grows. Damage is really one of those books that everyone should take the time to read. Biggest shocker? A.M. Jenkins is a woman.