The picture on the cover of this little book caught my eye. It was of a young girl with hair pulled back in a ponytail, arms and legs outstretched as she runs on an athletic track. I popped it open and read it in one sitting. Even though I’m generally not interesting in sports, the story of 4th-grade Mina was a good read.
Mina has just started attending a new school, and now has three friends. The kids are inseparable. They create the “Fellows Club” and make a friendship ball with bits of old yarn, taking turns caring for the ball. Things are going great – until Mina discovers she’s a natural at running in gym class. The coach is impressed with her talent, and wants her on the school team. But when Mina starts beating her new friend Ruth in races, it strains their friendship.
This is a story that most of us can relate to – how to keep a friendship going when there’s competition. It doesn’t have be athletic, but could be business talent, social skills, singing, acting or any other area where there are winners and losers. I appreciated the “real” feel of this story, written as the author was raising daughters. Although the book is directed at 3rd to 5th graders, adults can enjoy it too. It could spark some good conversation with a young person about how they handle this situation when it arises.