"The situation in which Tyler finds himself will resonate with many students who have made sacrifices for their dreams. The book can also be used to start a dialogue about the importance of balance in one's life. Making Select will make an excellent addition to a library collection and a possible choice for novel studies. Recommended."
- Canadian Review of Materials
Tyler is a strong character...the dialogue rings true...Those middle school readers who struggle with finishing a book will be comfortable with this short novel that addresses a real problem for younger elite athletes.
- Joan Marshall Resource Links
Praise for Steven Barwin's Icebreaker: "…engaging, fast-paced, and satisfying.
- Voice of Youth Advocates United States
In Making Select, author Steven Barwin tackles a hockey issue that has been much talked in recent years -- youth hockey burnout.
..depicts parents who, at first, seem uncaring but after better communicating together, end up supporting their child's life choices.... This satisfying read is good for reluctant readers, especially those with sports interests
- Jane Van Wiemokly
The situation in which Tyler finds himself will resonate with many students who have made sacrifices for their dreams. The book can also be used to start a dialogue about the importance of balance in one’s life. Making Select will make an excellent addition to a library collection and a possible choice for novel studies.
- Jonine Bergen is a librarian and former rink rat in Winnipeg
This action-filled book shows exactly how subtly bullying can be perpetuated. Everyone involved in team sports should read this book.
- International Reading Association
His book is on my two favourite subjects, basketball and bullying. And it's a real winner - or as I say, "nothin' but NET!!
What I do like about the story is that it’s interesting and it’s not confusing like some other stories. What I do not like about the story is that it is quite predictable and that the same thing happens over and over again. But the ending is just marvellous.
- Talia Angell, age 11
Bullying is a serious and prevalent problem for children of any age. Teaching children the difference between right and wrong is a difficult prospect at the best of times; but when children are surrounded by other children who look different than they do or who have different manners and customs, the urge to protect themselves from those who are different can quickly turn into bullying. For Renna, the addition of a new forward on their middle school basketball team makes her fear that she will be replaced. When the new girl starts bullying her and trying to force her out of the circle of teammates and friends Renna has made, her worst fears are realized. How Renna reacts to the bullying is an accurate portrayal of how children react to the flight or fight instinct.
- Danielle Williams
"Renna is an engaging and full dimensional character...Her descent from captain to outsider is believably plotted...[and] the lesson that a victim must confront the bully and the bully must aplogize to the victim is loud and clear. In this YA novel, Steven Barwin's two passions for teaching and basketball are successfully double-teamed."
- Resource Links, Connecting Classrooms & Libraries