From Goodreads: What girl doesn't want to be surrounded by gorgeous jocks day in and day out? Jordan Woods isn't just surrounded by hot guys, though - she leads them as the captain and quarterback on her high school football team. They all see her as one of the guys, and that's just fine. As long as she gets her athletic scholarship to a powerhouse university. But now there's a new guy in town who threatens her starring position on the team ... and has her suddenly wishing to be seen as more than just a teammate.
My Rating: 4 hearts
Thoughts on the Novel: When I requested Miranda Kenneally’s Catching Jordan, I thought I’d be getting a nice, light read based on the synopsis and the cover. What I got instead was a book with a surprising amount of depth – one that highlights going after what you want regardless of the obstacles while also providing the expected dose of romance.
As the quarterback of her football team, Jordan has faced a lot of discrimination because she’s a female; but that’s never stopped her from playing the game. Now, she's determined to attend the University of Alabama and play for their football team. This sometimes comes across as if Jordan has tunnel vision because she doesn’t even think about other universities’ football programs as a possibility, but it’s impossible to not admire her perseverance.
Since team camaraderie is such a big part of sports, I was really happy that Kenneally also emphasized this in Catching Jordan. Rather than Jordan’s team being a mass of nameless and unknown players, there were important secondary characters on it. I grew so comfortable with these characters as well that I felt as if JJ, Henry and Carter were my own friends. I think a huge reason for this was because Kenneally excelled at the dialogue, which therefore made Jordan and her friends feel like actual teens.
The romance in Catching Jordan was a little angstier than I expected but my main issue was the casual sex. Yes, teens do it; but it seemed like there was no one (except for maybe Carter) not having sex. Maybe it’s just the crowd Jordan hangs out with – cheerleaders and football players – but considering that the book is a bit about breaking stereotypes, it would have been nice to have more characters being in steady relationships and not hooking up just for sex. I also thought that Jordan lost her virginity a little too quickly, especially since she's never even had a boyfriend or been kissed before.
As well, the book summary doesn’t hint that a love triangle will develop, although that’s what ends up happening. It’s a well-developed love triangle however and not just a case of you know, two hot guys liking the main character just because. One of the guys interested in Jordan is Ty whose appeal I could see but who also annoyed me since he was controlling. The other guy also annoyed me but only because I wanted him to grow some balls and go after Jordan instead of not wanting to change things between them. I was obviously Team Henry as soon as I began to suspect that he might like Jordan because he was my favourite character in the book.
In addition to the romance, Jordan’s relationship with her family also gets a large focus in the book. Jordan’s brother, Mike, is someone she can talk to not just about football but also about other things. For instance, when Jordan thinks that she might like Ty, Mike is the first person she tells. It was a little strange for me because if I had an older brother, I’d probably not be talking to him about my love life but it works for Jordan because she’s surrounded by and grown up with guys.
Kenneally also makes Jordan’s relationship with her parents pretty realistic. It’s obvious they love her, but like any parent, they have their own wishes for Jordan. I think what’s important in the end though is that your parents support you and accept you for who you are, and Jordan’s parents definitely do that.
Whether you’re a football fan or not, if you love contemporary YA, you'll want to check out Catching Jordan!
Catching Jordan was released by Sourcebooks Fire on December 1, 2011.
Comments About the Cover: Don’t be fooled by the cover! Even if I think it’s cute, the cover gives off the vibe that Catching Jordan is a fluffy read. That’s so not true!
In exchange for an honest review, this ARC was received from the publisher (Sourcebooks) for free via NetGalley.