Cover image for Slump
Jarzyna, Dave.
Personal Author:
Publication Information:
New York : Delacorte Press, [1999]

Physical Description:
136 pages : 22 cm
When thirteen-year-old Mitch finds himself at odds with everyone in his life: brother, sister, friends, teachers, and coach, he worries that the situation will never change.
Reading Level:
590 Lexile.
Program Information:
Accelerated Reader AR MG 4.2 4.0 45305.

Reading Counts RC 6-8 5.6 9 Quiz: 21940 Guided reading level: NR.
Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Item Holds
X Juvenile Fiction Open Shelf

On Order



Thirteen-year-old Mitchie Evers is truly in a slump. He's at odds with every single person in his life. His friends, even old reliable best buddy Sammy, no longer seem to appreciate Mitchie's sparkling wit. His parents are so busy gushing over his perfect older brother that they don't have time for Mitchie. His teachers and his soccer coach--make that his ex-soccer coach--are fed up, too. Mitchie knows he's a little young to be in a serious slump. But what can he do about it?

Reviews 2

Publisher's Weekly Review

Debut author Jarzyana's novel is glibly narrated by 13-year-old jock Mitchie, who is stuck in a slump. One by one, he alienates his best friend, family, teachers and former soccer coach with his bull-headedness and his inappropriate and ill-timed sense of humor. With his penchant for hurting and insulting people, Mitchie makes a convincing jerk; readers may have trouble understanding why even the good-natured principal gives Mitchie the benefit of a doubt. Most of the relationships between Mitchie and others seem insubstantial, including that with Mitchie's perfect older brother and varsity captain, Chuck. The older sibling seems strangely absent from the novel, even though he is in part the catalyst for Mitchie's slump. The most memorable of the crew is Mitchie's lifelong neighbor and onetime pal, Annie, who orders the protagonist to shape up. A flashback of a touch football game the boy plays with his brother and father, more than halfway through the novel, offers a somewhat larger perspective on Mitchie's character and family dynamics, but not enough to make his about-face at the novel's end believable. Ages 8-12. (Aug.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved

School Library Journal Review

Gr 5-8-This first novel is not especially imaginative, but the plot will be familiar and reassuring to its readers. Everything goes wrong for 13-year-old Mitchie Evers after he quits the soccer team due to a disagreement with the coach. The first part of the book, however, is nothing more than a litany of the teen's problems with no real buildup or excitement. At this point, the novel is in as much of a slump as its protagonist. But as Mitchie's friend Annie points out, slumps happen to the best of us, and by chapter 11, Mitchie is determined to make "the greatest comeback of all time" on the field, in math class, and at home. It's then that readers see him develop into a more complex adolescent. Although mildly didactic in parts, the book redeems itself with this transformation. Along with the requisite sports passages and teenage vernacular, the story has a satisfying ending when a new snowfall signals a fresh start.-Andrew Medlar, Chicago Public Library, IL (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.



Annie and I made the last turn and headed up the school sidewalk.  I don't think I was ever so happy to see Keller Lake North Middle School.   "Stop, Mitchell," Annie ordered. I kept walking. "I mean it, Mitchell, stop.  Stop.  Stop right now or I'll tell all my friends that you tried to kiss me." I stopped. "What?" I asked. She looked straight into my eyes.  The morning sun flashed off her braces. "I really am worried about you, Mitchell," she said.  "You just don't seem, I don't know . . . you don't seem happy." I looked down and kicked at the dirt. "Don't worry about me.  Nothing's wrong," I said.  "Maybe it's just a midlife crisis." "But you're only thirteen." "Yeah, but you know me, Annie.  I've always been ahead of my time." Excerpted from Slump by Dave Jarzyna All rights reserved by the original copyright owners. Excerpts are provided for display purposes only and may not be reproduced, reprinted or distributed without the written permission of the publisher.