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Lynch, Chris. Slot Machine, 1995
This is a great YOUNG ADULT coming of age story.  Elvin is an
overweight 13-year-old sent to a boys sports-type camp.  Everyone
must go in a "slot" which is a sport.  He starts out struggling in
football, moves on to other sports ends up in wrestling which he
starts to like but is thrown out from.  Meanwhile his friend is trying
to get in with the fun in-crowd of older boys.  He goes through all
sorts of initiation type things such as heavy drinking and one of
which is going in the woods and being force to watch a movie (run
on generator) called Barnyard Hijinks.  In it a lady and her
assistant had "several farm beasts working harder than any
creature has labored since the invention of the mechanical
tractor...The movie was disgusting".  While these initiation rituals
are an very important part of the story.  I can not put a book in my
middle school library that has references to bestiality (no matter
how carefully disguised.)  That one paragraph is so unfortunate
because the rest 241 page book is just wonderful.  The boy and his
friends grow up a lot over the summer while learning a great deal
about themselves and life in general.
Frederick Muller
fmuller@tellurian.net         Halsted Middle School
(973) 383-7440  ext.228       59 Halsted Street
FAX (973) 383-7432             Newton, NJ   07860
My book reviews are compiled at:

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