The Harder They Fall
Publisher: Barrington Stoke
Cal is a bit of a geek: he loves comics, dreams of being a superhero and longs after a girl way out of his league. Cal's parents are lovely, but a bit uncool themselves. The latest bit of technology in their home is an old black-and-white TV. All of this, of course, means Cal is a target for the school bullies.
Jacob is new to the school. The fact that he's new, plus his shabby clothes and quick temper, make him a target, too. However, when Cal's mum begins volunteering at the local food bank, it threatens to expose a secret about Jacob and his family.
Bali Rai once again hits home with a current and unfortunately necessary book. As always, the characters are fully fleshed out, the dialogue both believable and accessible, and the plot well paced and worthy of its subject matter.