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Free Climb
Free Climb
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Reviewed Titles
Jake Maddox

Free Climb

by Jake Maddox
Illustrated by Sean Tiffany

The only fun thing to do in Amir's neighborhood is climb buildings. Of course, no one will let him do that. When a police officer offers to bring Amir to a climbing wall outside of the city, Amir is thrilled. He meets William, who also loves climbing. But William doesn't want to learn the right way to climb, and before long, he is in serious danger.

PublisherStone Arch Books
BrandJake Maddox
Age Level8-11 Years
Reading LevelGrades 2-3
GenreSports Fiction
Trim Size5 1/4 x 7 1/2
Page Count72



School Library Journal - Kate Kohlbeck; Randall School

"These sport-themed novels provide a lot of bang for your buck and are perfect for reluctant readers. In Rivals, Amy suffers an injury that prevents her from competing on her school track team for two months of the season, and she worries that she won’t be prepared for a big meet. Priebe successfully conveys the African-American child’s love for running, and the dialogue is easygoing and realistic. The fast-paced story has enough suspense to keep readers’ interest. The only minus may be the illustrations, which appear rather one-dimensional and amateurish. In Climb, 14-year-old Amir is befriended by a police officer who helps the boy channel his dangerous attempts at scaling buildings into the safe, fun hobby of climbing in a gym. The book skillfully combines an action-based plot with facts about the sport. The story is well executed (if a little predictable), but it is not enhanced by the illustrations. Back matter in both books is excellent–a brief biography of Babe Didrikson Zaharias in Rivals and facts about climbing in the other book; questions to prompt discussion and writing; and directions for using the publisher’s FactHound Web site to further explore these activities." - School Library Journal

March 1, 2009

Puget Sound Council

"I recommend that every library have the Jake Maddox books for their boy readers. They are easy to read chapter books (RL 3.3) and are about high interest sports. The characters have to make decisions and deal with situations that most boys have to deal with whether they are playing sports or just hanging out with friends. The boys that come to my library can’t get enough of this series and eagerly grab at any new ones that come in. In this story, Amir loves to climb. A police officer steers him to a climbing wall outside of the city after catching Amir climbing the side of a building. At the climbing wall, Amir meets a new friend, William. William doesn’t want to learn the right way to climb and puts himself in serious danger. Amir must use his wits and his climbing skill to save his friend. This book has an excellent, sturdy library binding. (Recommended, buy.)" - Puget Sound Council

February 1, 2009

Jake Maddox

Jake Maddox

Who is Jake Maddox? Athlete, author, world-traveler – or all three? He has surfed in Hawaii, scuba-dived in Australia, and climbed the mountains of Peru and Alaska. His books range from the most popular team sports to outdoor activities to survival adventures and even to auto racing. His exploits have inspired numerous writers to walk in his footsteps – literally! Each of his stories is stamped with teamwork, fair play, and a strong sense of self-worth and discipline. Always a team-player, Maddox realizes it takes more than one man (or woman) to create a book good enough for a young reader. He hopes the lessons learned on the court, field, or arena and the champion sprinter pace of his books can motivate kids to become better athletes and lifelong readers.

Go to the Author’s Page →