CM January 26, 
1996. Vol. 2, Number 15

image Hockey Night in Transcona.

John Danakas.
Toronto: Lorimer, 1995. 115pp, paper, $8.95.
ISBN 1-55028-504-1.

Grades 4 - 6 / Ages 9 - 11.
Review by Lorraine Douglas


Cody's body was plastered onto the boards, his helmet knocking once, twice against the Plexiglas. His head seemed to swish around inside the helmet like jello inside a bowl. Then the defender who'd nailed him finished the job off by sneaking a quick elbow to the ribs. A whistle blew.

Hockey Night in Transcona is John Danakas's best sports novel yet. He is a former editor and writer for the Winnipeg Sun, and previously wrote two novels in Lorimer's "Sports Stories" series for the same age level -- Curve Ball and Lizzie's Soccer Showdown.

Cody is a twelve-year-old boy living with his single mother and his younger sister in Winnipeg. He's a great hockey player, but since his father has moved to B.C. and started a new family, there is not enough money for him to play league hockey.

But Cody and his friends decide to pool their resources so that he can try out for the Transcona Sharks. The coach is impressed, and Cody is able to play in the league when he gets a break on the fees. But it's not all easy -- for one thing, the coach's son, Stu, loses his spot on the roster to Cody. And at home Cody is troubled too: his father wants him to come out to B.C. on the train with his little sister for a visit, but Cody is so angry that he doesn't want to go.

Eventually, Cody manages to come to terms with his feelings for his father by watching the relationship between Stu and his father.

This is a fast-paced novel that would make a good read-aloud for a class. Hockey Night in Transcona could promote discussion on making choices and being committed to achieving your personal best. The cover illustration is a bit geeky and could have been more appealing.


Lorraine Douglas is the Youth Services Coordinator for the Winnipeg Public Library. She played league hockey for years in Winnipeg before realizing she would never get into the NHL.

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Copyright © 1996 the Manitoba Library Association. Reproduction for personal use is permitted only if this copyright notice is maintained. Any other reproduction is prohibited without permission.

Published by
The Manitoba Library Association
ISSN 1201-9364

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