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Pete Hautman, 1952-

Book - 2017

Hoping to win a cash prize in a pizza eating contest after racking up a tab on his mother's credit card, David must juggle his competitive eating training with the responsibility of looking after his autistic younger brother.

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jFICTION/Hautman Pete
0 / 1 copies available
Location Call Number   Status
Children's Room jFICTION/Hautman Pete Due Aug 31, 2022
Subjects
Published
Somerville, Massachusetts : Candlewick Press 2017.
Edition
First edition
Language
English
Physical Description
278 pages ; 22 cm
ISBN
0763690708
9780763690700
Main Author
Pete Hautman, 1952- (author)
Review by Booklist Reviews

*Starred Review* Jack-of-all-genres Hautman turns to the mouthwatering, madcap world of competitive eating. Narrator David admires the greats: Joey Chestnut, who can down 70 dogs in 10 minutes; Takeru Kobayashi, a Guinness Record-holding lightweight; and his personal favorite, Jooky Garofalo—who legendarily lost a Nathan's Famous championship by one single half dog. David can't believe when Jooky's unfinished dog appears on auction site BuyBuy.com. And he's floored when his bid for the "piece of history" wins. Unfortunately, one mistyped decimal point means BuyBuy just charged $2,000—not $20—to his mother's credit card. David may be able to inhale a single pizza in under five minutes, but to win the Super Pigorino Bowl's $5,000 grand prize—and repay his mom—he'll have to train like never before. More than a story of stomach-shattering determination, this is also an unflinching exploration of David's bond with little brother Mal, who, though their mother forbids the label, has been diagnosed with autism. With crystalline prose, delectable detail, rip-roaring humor, and larger-than-life characters, Hautman gracefully examines what it means to be a friend, a family member, and, through it all, a kid trying to do the right thing. Readers will race to devour it, but like Papa Pigorino's colossal BDT pizzas, this infectious tale is a thing to be savored. Copyright 2017 Booklist Reviews.

Review by Publishers Weekly Reviews

Hautman (Eden West) is both funny and uplifting in this good-natured story of incoming high school freshman David Miller, whose chief talent is the ability to eat an entire pizza in under five minutes. When an accidental charge to his mother's credit card puts him $2,000 in the hole, David attempts to earn the money back by winning the Super Pigorino Bowl, a pizza-eating contest. To compete with the nation's fastest eaters, he must train through the summer and somehow find time to babysit his younger brother, Mal, who would probably be labeled autistic if the boys' mother allowed labels. David's sardonic musings—about everything from life in Vacaville, Iowa, to the growing weirdness between his friends Cyn and HeyMan—are authentic, humorous, and endearing. It's impossible not to root for David as he devours pizzas, burgers, and even cabbage in substantial quantities, and even less possible not to dig his relationship with potato-chip-loving, twig-collecting Mal. Hautman offers lots of great takeaways about loyalty, friendship, and perseverance, wrapped in a wholly enjoyable story about a kid who, in the end, just loves to eat pizza. Ages 10–14. (Sept.) Copyright 2017 Publisher Weekly.

Review by School Library Journal Reviews

Gr 5–8—David meant to bid $20, not $2,000, on the half-eaten hot dog of his favorite competitive eater. But it happened, and he won, and he sort of used his mom's credit card to place the bid. To make up the money, David realizes it's time to turn his interest into cash and compete in a local pizza eating contest. He can eat an entire pizza in under five minutes, but he'll have to train to do better than that and win the competition. When he's not stretching his stomach by eating disgusting amounts of raw cabbage, David hangs out with his two best friends, Cyn and HeyMan. He also watches his little brother, who has autism, Mal, and rolls his eyes at his overachieving older sister and her annoying new boyfriend. David feels caught in the middle when it comes to his family and whatever is happening between Cyn and HeyMan. This novel is laugh-out-loud funny and genuinely sweet. Though the premise of scarfing down pizzas seems silly, this is ultimately a meaningful book with insight into having a sibling with special needs and the general ups and downs that come with being a teenager. VERDICT A fantastically funny, relatable book that will be an easy sell and a rewarding read for most middle graders.—Emily Moore, Camden County Library System, NJ Copyright 2017 School Library Journal.

Review by Publisher Summary 1

Hoping to win a cash prize in a pizza eating contest after racking up a tab on his mother's credit card, David must juggle his competitive eating training with the responsibility of looking after his autistic younger brother.

Review by Publisher Summary 2

Entering the world's greatest pizza-eating contest after secretly putting thousands of dollars onto his mother's credit card, a young competitive eater finds his efforts complicated by family denial about his younger brother's autism. By the National Book Award-winning author of Godless.

Review by Publisher Summary 3

Competitive eating vies with family expectations in a funny, heartfelt novel for middle-grade readers by National Book Award winner Pete Hautman.David can eat an entire sixteen-inch pepperoni pizza in four minutes and thirty-six seconds. Not bad. But he knows he can do better. In fact, he'll have to do better: he's going to compete in the Super Pigorino Bowl, the world's greatest pizza-eating contest, and he has to win it, because he borrowed his mom's credit card and accidentally spent $2,000 on it. So he really needs that prize money. Like, yesterday. As if training to be a competitive eater weren't enough, he's also got to keep an eye on his little brother, Mal (who, if the family believed in labels, would be labeled autistic, but they don't, so they just label him Mal). And don't even get started on the new weirdness going on between his two best friends, Cyn and HeyMan. Master talent Pete Hautman has cooked up a rich narrative shot through with equal parts humor and tenderness, and the result is a middle-grade novel too delicious to put down.

Review by Publisher Summary 4

Competitive eating vies with family expectations in a funny, heartfelt novel for middle-grade readers by National Book Award winner Pete Hautman.David can eat an entire sixteen-inch pepperoni pizza in four minutes and thirty-six seconds. Not bad. But he knows he can do better. In fact, he’ll have to do better: he’s going to compete in the Super Pigorino Bowl, the world’s greatest pizza-eating contest, and he has to win it, because he borrowed his mom’s credit card and accidentally spent $2,000 on it. So he really needs that prize money. Like, yesterday. As if training to be a competitive eater weren’t enough, he’s also got to keep an eye on his little brother, Mal (who, if the family believed in labels, would be labeled autistic, but they don’t, so they just label him Mal). And don’t even get started on the new weirdness going on between his two best friends, Cyn and HeyMan. Master talent Pete Hautman has cooked up a rich narrative shot through with equal parts humor and tenderness, and the result is a middle-grade novel too delicious to put down.