10.6 It’s Monday! What are you reading? #KnockoutGames by G. Neri

Guess what today is!


{Celebrating the books we’ve read in the past week

& the titles we are currently reading.}

This meme is originated by Jen and Kellee at TeachMentorTexts. Thanks!

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[I downloaded an advance copy of this for my iPad for night reading. It is captivating, but Rated M for mature. I wouldn’t recommend this book for middle school students.
Parents: If you ever have any questions about the maturity level of a book I post on here, please don’t hesitate to ask.]
I read Neri’s book Ghetto Cowboy  and really enjoyed it. When I saw Knockout Games on Netgalley, I was quick to request it.
This was a far cry from Ghetto Cowboy. It was a brutal book. Perhaps that’s what made it so captivating. I mentioned last Wednesday that stories are like windows or mirrors.
This one was definitely a window.
I shuddered many times imagining the lives these teens were leading and the consequences they would face for their actions. I stayed up way later than I intended to find out what would happen with Erica and the crew.
Brutal. Captivating. Thought-provoking.
Publishers Weekly

A 15-year-old gets mixed up in dangerous activities in this gritty urban drama, partially inspired by real events. After Erica’s parents split up and her mother takes her to live in St. Louis, Erica feels like a fish out of water, part of a small white minority in her new school. Her only refuge is the video camera her father gave her. Then Erica meets Kalvin, the so-called Knockout King, is swept up by his dangerous charm, and starts filming the activities of his “TKO” club, a gang of middle-schoolers who assault random passersby with the intention of knocking them out: “One hit or quit.” As events spiral out of control, with people getting hurt and the authorities cracking down, Erica has to choose between her new relationship and friends, and doing the right thing. Neri (Ghetto Cowboy) skillfully portrays the moral and emotional turmoil of a teen desperate for acceptance, and the repercussions of making hard decisions. Racial and social undercurrents further give this story an intense, thought-provoking edge.

For some great background on this book and why Neri wrote it, check out his page. I always enjoy getting a glimpse into the mind of an author.

How many books have my students read? What are they reading?

Check out the reading totals and the handy SpinCam!

Click on each picture to see a 360º view of students and their books:

[this will be updated at the end of the day]

Period 1&2

10 Books


Period 5&6

23 Books


Period 9&10

8 Books

Parents are invited to participate in our journey as well. 

For every parent who leaves a comment on TODAY’S POST with what you’re reading, I’ll give your child a BUSTED ticket…

Let’s have a look back to check for parent comments.

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David Etkin

3 thoughts on “10.6 It’s Monday! What are you reading? #KnockoutGames by G. Neri

  1. Pingback: 10.14 It’s Monday! What are you reading? #CountingBy7s | {Eat the Book}

  2. Over the past three months I read the Jo Nesbø mystery series on Harry Hole. Amazing multi threaded stories that always come together in unexpected ways. 4/5 stars.

    This month are three of the HBR leadership journals.



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