Oct 31, 2014

DeeJay Reviews: THE HOCKEY SAINT by Howard Shapiro #Giveaway @hockeyplayer

The Hockey Saint
by Howard Shapiro

Publication Date: September 10, 2014
Series: Forever Friends #2
Genre: YA Graphic Novel
Format: Print
Source: Received for free from the author and Jean Book Nerd Tours in exchange for an honest review

The highly anticipated sequel to "The Stereoypical Freaks" and the 2nd book in the "Forever Friends" Trilogy, this is "The Hockey Saint"

Twenty-one year old Jeremiah Jacobson is the world's best hockey player, but he wasn't prepared for the frenzy and scrutiny that came with that title. Tom Leonard is an average college sophomore... just a guy trying to find his place in the world as he sorts through issues that are both very real and seemingly insurmountable.

Through a chance meeting, these two strike up an unlikely friendship. Their bond is tested when Tom discovers that his idol isn't as perfect up close as he seems from afar. With Jeremiah living a little too much in the moment and with his past catching up to him, will Tom be able to help him before it's too late?

I love graphic novels so I was excited to get this one in the mail. I've heard great things about Stereotypical Freaks so I was pretty confidant about its sequel.

Let's start with the graphics, which were amazing. The attention to detail, the drawing style, the color palette. All awesome. All the right facial expressions were captured at the right times, helping you to really feel what was going on. A++

The plot was pretty cool too. University hockey player meets his idol and finds out that Jeremiah isn't all that he thought he was. I was a little weary of this going in, but when I realized where it was headed I really liked it. This is a classic case of never judging a book by its cover...or by how many points they score. However, there was one curveball that I wasn't sure about, but in the end, everyone got what they deserved, whether good or bad.

Other lessons to be learned are: secrets can be dangerous, true friendship is almost impossible to find, and there's nothing more rewarding than helping those in need. At least, this is what I pulled from this graphic novel. This is a story about morality, honesty (to others and oneself), and loyalty. This GN introduces all these elements without being preachy and that's what makes it special.

Do I recommend? Yes, even if you just want to check out the graphics. It has a good story and every now and then, a good laugh or two. It was worth every moment I spent reading it!

HOWARD SHAPIRO lives in Pittsburgh, PA with his wife and two sons. The Controller for the Pittsburgh-based Visual Effects firm, Animal Inc., he has also written four children’s books and The Stereotypical Freaks will be his debut Graphic Novel. His 2008 book, Hockey Player for Life, has been the #1 downloaded children’s hockey e-book on Amazon’s Kindle chart since its arrival as an e-book in November of 2011. His, Hockey Days book was the only book featured in the December 2007 Sporting News Annual Gift Guide as a Best Buy Gift for Children. Through a corporate sponsorship program he set up (and maintains), since the 2010-11 season, both of his children’s hockey books have been given to NHL teams (over 2,500 copies to date) for use in their community and educational initiatives. Since 2006 his annual charity raffle, which he matches dollar for dollar donated, has raised funds for several hockey-related charities including the Mario Lemieux Foundation, Hockey Fights Cancer and the Keith and Lisa Primeau Scholarship Fund.

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