Sidelined by Kendra C. Highley-a review

SIDELINED by Kendra C Highley-a review

Sidelined / / Barnes and Noble / KOBO

ABOUT THE BOOK: Release Date October 1, 2013

After being pushed to excel her entire life, high school basketball star Genna Pierce is finally where she wants to be. University scouts are taking notice, her team is on its way to the state tourney, and Jake Butler, the hot boy she’s daydreamed about since ninth grade, is showing some definite interest. When he asks her out and their relationship takes off, Genna believes things can’t get better.

Then, it’s over.

A freak accident ends her career before it’s even begun. Her parents are fighting more than ever, her friends don’t understand what she’s going through, and she’s not sure who she is without basketball. And while he tries to be there for her, Genna doesn’t understand how Jake could ever want the broken version of the girl he fell for.

Her life in a tailspin, Genna turns to the only solace that eases her pain: Vicodin.


REVIEW: SIDELINED is a young adult (YA) contemporary storyline that tackles some issues of addiction and dependency, the break up of a family but also looks at the push to succeed at all costs.

Genna Pierce is a talented and scouted high school basketball player who is on the verge of making it big. But a reckless play and a career ending injury would force Genna to the sidelines-a place where neither she nor her mother wanted her to be.

The storyline follows Genna as the boy she has crushed on for years, finally takes notice, just as Genna’s star power begins to fall. And to complicate matters, Genna’s injury required major surgery that has left her with lingering pain and an addiction to Vicodin that spirals out of control rather quickly.

The reader watches as Genna’s life, family and career hit rock bottom and her relationship with Jake turns ugly. Genna’s character and personality deteriorate over the weeks and months, and her addiction and loss of control are only the beginning.

I did question some of the premise as it pertained to the legal problems and the quick turn around and action of the DEA. In reality there would be a longer time frame and a bigger case to build before some of the plot information and details surfaced.

The character of Genna is difficult to like although she does endure some harrowing pain and suffering. Her attitude prior to the injury was aggressive and not very flattering and afterwards it was amplified by her addiction, embarrassment and perceived humiliation. Genna’s loss of control and power over her career and her life manifested into anger against those that she loved the most.

This is also a story about a family that is slowly pulled apart by the actions of their own. Betrayal and heartache only scratch the surface of dysfunctional family dynamics and the devastating injury to their star child is the final straw that breaks the proverbial back.

Kendra C. Highley has written a story that will be all too familiar to many families and young athletes hoping to make it to the professional leagues. The push to win at all costs; the drive to succeed; and the harrowing loss of control when an injury sidelines not only the athlete but the family as well.

Copy supplied by the publisher-Entangled Teen.

Reviewed by Sandy


9 thoughts on “Sidelined by Kendra C. Highley-a review

  1. Great review, Sandy. This is an unusual premise in YA, but one that is somewhat realistic these days in Sports, and the pressure put on the young players to win at the coaching level . The pressure is also bad for some children by the parents who want them to succeed, even if they aren’t interested in playing. This does sound like an interesting read.

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