A review by mary_johnston
The Passing Playbook, by Isaac Fitzsimons

funny hopeful informative inspiring lighthearted reflective relaxing fast-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? Character
  • Strong character development? Yes
  • Loveable characters? Yes
  • Diverse cast of characters? Yes
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? No


Becky Albertalli explained my feelings toward this book pretty damn well, cause boy did I love it!

It tackles topics like identity, fear of coming out, bullying, and what that can do to a person, being on the spectrum and, my absolute favorite one, religious bigotry.

"Spencer always assumed that coming out was a one-way thing, that the responsibility fell on him, and him alone. But Coach's story made him reconsider. Just because the onus always fell on trans and queer people, didn't mean it should."

Being excluded from society because of the person you identify as is such bullshit and should not be happening anymore, although it still is. And then, as Spencer also said plenty of times, he had it very good compared to other people which is really inhumane when you think about it. Trying to conform to the so called "norms" could mentally and physically harm a person and this book shed some light on that. It also paid tribute to many transgender people and queer people alike, the most obvious one, and intended so, is for Aiden Rivera Schaeff, this being one of the many reasons I enjoyed reading the book as much as I did.

The Passing Playbook also has in main focus "football" and the bonds created between teammates and their coach as well as the struggles they encounter together. It described this relationship as a very healthy and warm one, without any prejudices. In the end, they are a family and they have each other's back.

I've never cared much for football or any other sport in general and I had a sort of hesitation before picking the book up, because of this. However, now that I've finished it, I think of football as a less brutal sport, in which the aim is not just to kick the ball.

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