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These six powerful short stories chronicle bits of the lives of characters, major and minor, who have walked the rugged terrain of Chris Crutcher's earlier works. They also introduce some new and unforgettable personalities who may well be heard from again in future books. As with all Crutcher's work, these are stories about athletes, and yet they are not sport stories. They are tales of love and death, bigotry and heroism, of real people doing their best even when that best isn't very good. Crutcher's straightforward style and total honesty have earned him an admiring audience and made readers of many nonreaders.

Published: HarperCollins on Sep 22, 2009
ISBN: 9780061968341
List price: $8.99
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With themes such as acceptance, forgiveness, and grief, Crutcher uses sports to tell six coming of age stories. Five of the six stories are based on characters from other Crutcher books. The sixth is a reprint from a short story collection. Angus, the butt of a cruel school joke, has the last laugh. Petey wrestles with a girl in more ways than one. John wrestles with living in the shadow of his father. Lionel trolls deep within himself to try to forgive a friend who caused the boating accident that killed his family. Jack, emotionally challenged, is thrust into the perils of racial prejudice by his father, a fencing instructor. Louie, a football player, tackles the prejudice surrounding aids as he becomes friends with a dying man.read more
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A brief moment in the life of Angus Bethune is a short story about a boy who is very self-concious. His parents are both divorced and are gay. He is a fat kid who doesn't quite fit in. He is in love with a girl named Melissa and he is able to dance with her at their Winter Ball because they were selected king and queen. While they are dancing he finds out that she is not as perfect as he thought but it did not change who she was and how he felt about her. This would be a great book for a classroom setting. Maybe 6th or 7th grade. These our the grades when appearance begins to matter and kids can become self concious about themselves. This would be a great book to show that even though someone may seem perfect they are really not and students should just be comfortable with who they are. We all have different things that make is uncomfortable with ourselves, therefore we are all in the same boat. Also, it could teach that people aren't always what they seem. This could be good and bad. It could teach students that they need to really get to know someone before they make a judgement on who they are. I really enjoyed this story. It is a story that, even though it is directed towards adolescents, it could be read and enjoyed by any age. Pretty much anyone over they age of 12 or so could relate to this story because everyone has some sort of insecurity wih themselves big or small. I could not use it in my classroom because I plan on teaching kindergarten or first grade so this would not apply.read more
Is this review helpful? Yes | NoThank you for your feedback.
This is a short story about a kid dealt a miserable hand, or so he thinks. He is overweight, unattractive, named "Angus" (like the cow), and his parents are both gay. He has four parents that love him though, and has always been told to stay true to himself. The night of the story is the night of his highschool's Winter Ball. He has been voted on court by what he can only assume is a big prank. He accepts, taking the advice of his grandfather, not wanting to draw any attention to himself. The queen is this popular girl he's been in love with forever. He's afraid to be alone with her on the dance floor. Not because he expects anything to happen, it's just that he can't dance and she's so perfect. What will he do?I think this story would be great to teach because of it's honesty. He comes out and tells you all of his problems. For me, at least, it made me open up and feel like this was a real character. I think children could become turned off by the typical, all-American boy heroes if they felt no connection. Angus, however is an outcast with anger, family, self-image and weight issues. His honesty could help some children deal with their problems, or see that they aren't as big as they think. I fear that the gay parents would be a problem in teaching this. Especially in the school district where I graduated. I just don't see parents or even the students being comfortable with such a work yet. Maybe by the time I am actually teaching though. I really did like the story. I felt for Angus and I was rooting for him by the end of it. I feel like the queen was very relatable too, not that I've ever had an eating disorder, but just the whole "having it together" projection. I love that she was comfortable around him and opened up. It would have killed me if she would have been rude to him during his special moment, even though it was what we all half expected, right?read more
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With themes such as acceptance, forgiveness, and grief, Crutcher uses sports to tell six coming of age stories. Five of the six stories are based on characters from other Crutcher books. The sixth is a reprint from a short story collection. Angus, the butt of a cruel school joke, has the last laugh. Petey wrestles with a girl in more ways than one. John wrestles with living in the shadow of his father. Lionel trolls deep within himself to try to forgive a friend who caused the boating accident that killed his family. Jack, emotionally challenged, is thrust into the perils of racial prejudice by his father, a fencing instructor. Louie, a football player, tackles the prejudice surrounding aids as he becomes friends with a dying man.
Is this review helpful? Yes | NoThank you for your feedback.
A brief moment in the life of Angus Bethune is a short story about a boy who is very self-concious. His parents are both divorced and are gay. He is a fat kid who doesn't quite fit in. He is in love with a girl named Melissa and he is able to dance with her at their Winter Ball because they were selected king and queen. While they are dancing he finds out that she is not as perfect as he thought but it did not change who she was and how he felt about her. This would be a great book for a classroom setting. Maybe 6th or 7th grade. These our the grades when appearance begins to matter and kids can become self concious about themselves. This would be a great book to show that even though someone may seem perfect they are really not and students should just be comfortable with who they are. We all have different things that make is uncomfortable with ourselves, therefore we are all in the same boat. Also, it could teach that people aren't always what they seem. This could be good and bad. It could teach students that they need to really get to know someone before they make a judgement on who they are. I really enjoyed this story. It is a story that, even though it is directed towards adolescents, it could be read and enjoyed by any age. Pretty much anyone over they age of 12 or so could relate to this story because everyone has some sort of insecurity wih themselves big or small. I could not use it in my classroom because I plan on teaching kindergarten or first grade so this would not apply.
Is this review helpful? Yes | NoThank you for your feedback.
This is a short story about a kid dealt a miserable hand, or so he thinks. He is overweight, unattractive, named "Angus" (like the cow), and his parents are both gay. He has four parents that love him though, and has always been told to stay true to himself. The night of the story is the night of his highschool's Winter Ball. He has been voted on court by what he can only assume is a big prank. He accepts, taking the advice of his grandfather, not wanting to draw any attention to himself. The queen is this popular girl he's been in love with forever. He's afraid to be alone with her on the dance floor. Not because he expects anything to happen, it's just that he can't dance and she's so perfect. What will he do?I think this story would be great to teach because of it's honesty. He comes out and tells you all of his problems. For me, at least, it made me open up and feel like this was a real character. I think children could become turned off by the typical, all-American boy heroes if they felt no connection. Angus, however is an outcast with anger, family, self-image and weight issues. His honesty could help some children deal with their problems, or see that they aren't as big as they think. I fear that the gay parents would be a problem in teaching this. Especially in the school district where I graduated. I just don't see parents or even the students being comfortable with such a work yet. Maybe by the time I am actually teaching though. I really did like the story. I felt for Angus and I was rooting for him by the end of it. I feel like the queen was very relatable too, not that I've ever had an eating disorder, but just the whole "having it together" projection. I love that she was comfortable around him and opened up. It would have killed me if she would have been rude to him during his special moment, even though it was what we all half expected, right?
Is this review helpful? Yes | NoThank you for your feedback.
One of the short stories is about a boy named Angus. Angus is overweight and both of his parents are remarried to homosexuals. He deals with a lot of ridicule. He is even named “King” at a school dance as a joke. The “Queen,” Melissa is the girl of his dreams. She seems perfect, but during their dance reveals that she is bulimic. In the other story, Junior was born with “water on the brain.” He undergoes life threatening surgery and survives. Because of his brain damage, his head is much larger than some and he also has seizures. He also deals with a lot of bullying, but has a best friend that will stand up for him.In both stories, the main character has a friend in the end. The friend is somebody that can understand or relate to the problems that he is facing. I would think that most young readers could connect with these stories. Not necessarily the same issues, but feeling as if he or she were “different.” It also shows how important it can be to have a friend. In my opinion, this book was average. I could have stopped reading it and not been interested in what happened next. I think these stories would be great for students in Junior High, especially the story about Angus. At this age, many students feel awkward and just need somebody to understand. I really appreciated Melissa being able to stand up to her “popular boyfriend” and be nice to Angus.
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In A Brief Moment in the Life of Angus Bethune, which is a short story from Athletic Shorts, Angus Bethune talks about how different he is from the moment he was born. Angus Bethune was a big kid. Not only was he big, but his parents divorced from their heterosexual relationship to both become homosexuals. Anyways, so the real problem Angus has is that he is going to be crowned the King at the dance they are having and he is going to get to dance with the one girl he has had a crush on since he was younger. But, Angus does not know how to dance. When he gets to the dance the girl is there and her boyfriend is a jerk and treats her bad. Angus stands up to the boyfirend and goes and stands with the girl, Melissa. He finds out Melissa is bulemic and realizes she is not a goddess. He then dances with her at the dance.One connection that i could make to the class is not to bully people. We need to look at how the boyfriend treated Angus just because of his parents or because of how he looked. That is not right and students need to know that treating people badly based on their looks is wrong. Another connection can be the bulemia. this is an eating disorder and it is bad for their bodies. But I think I would tie it in with telling the students not to be ashamed of how they look. I absolutely loved this short story. I thought It was funny and very entertaining! I was not having a very good day and when I read this, I just smiled! I thought it was great that Angus stood up for his parents. I also thought it was great that Angus did not look at Melissa as a goddess anymore, because he knew that she once had problems as well. Overall this book was fantastic!
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The article “Angus Bethune” from the book Athletic Shorts is a quirky depiction of the struggles that come with being a teenager. Angus is the fat kid with the weird family and the weird name; however, along with these awkward traits, the reader discovers that Angus has many lovable qualities. Amidst these lovable qualities is Angus’s bravery which he makes good use of when he is named Winter Ball King and forced to share a dance with his long time crush, Melissa Lefevre. One problem – Angus can’t dance. This story will take you back to all of the awkwardness that makes high school unforgettable.I think this text is fun, relevant, and relatable for many adolescents. Although some of the situations, such as Angus’s family life, are extreme, young people can learn and mature from seeing Angus’s perspective on life. People can see that everyone from the funny guy to the popular girl have struggles. This text may give a newfound self-confidence to its readers. This passage may also encourage students to break away from their self-revolved thinking and consider the struggles that others may be facing. Ideally this article has the potential to show students their similarities and form a tight-knit community of adolescents.I adored the characters in this article and found them perfectly flawed as all teenagers are. Everyone can think back and remember those adolescent insecurities that haunted them. It is refreshing to see that quirky and weird aren’t bad things. They are normal. They are fun. This article renewed my insight on the lives of high school students.
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