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Carpe Librum

Reviews and bookish conversation with author Samantha Wilcoxson.

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Historical Novel Society

Woodlawn by Todd Gerelds

Woodlawn: One Hope. One Dream. One Way. - Todd Gerelds, Mark Schlabach, Bobby Bowden

It saddens me to rate this book so low. Rest assured it is due to the writing, not the story. I requested this book because I thought it might be a great story for me to share with my 12 year old son. Not to brag (too much), but he is a natural athlete who enjoys hard physical work and almost effortlessly shines in football and basketball. I thought the story of the Woodlawn players dominating in their sport while overcoming prejudice and giving glory to God would be perfect for him. And maybe it will be, in movie form.


Yes, I will still watch the movie and even look forward to it, because I hope that those who create the cinematic form of this story are able to give it life. This story should have suspense, excitement, and emotion, but it reads like a list of scores in the newspaper. A talented writer could have done so much more with this, helping the reader feel that they personally knew the players as they learned to love God and each other.


The line "for whatever reason" is actually used multiple times in this book.


This is one of the few times that I will suggest that you watch the movie and skip the book.


Thank you to NetGalley for providing my copy of this book. Opinions are my own.