Signed by the author Delves into the perilous world of a black teen hockey phenom in 1968, during the highly charged Civil Rights era. Jessie leaves home for New Hampshire, despite misgivings of his parents and girlfriend Rose, to pursue his dreams at an elite, formerly all-white prep school, which he hopes will put him on the path to the Ivy League and NHL. He is realistic about encountering racist fans and opponents at his new school, but finds that he's in the most danger from his own teammates and coach, who clearly despises him based only on the color of his skin. Full of exciting on-ice action and heart-wrenching realism, Cracking the Ice will have readers rooting for Jessie as he fights not only to be treated fairly and with respect, but to survive.
"Cracking the Ice scores the literary equivalent of a hat-trick: funny, harrowing and finally, heartfelt. This book is a winner." --Greg Neri, author of Yummy: the Last Days of a Southside Shorty, a 2011 Coretta Scott King Honor book
"I started Cracking the Ice and could not put it down. Jessie Stackhouse's generosity, hope and intelligence touched my heart...I kept reading until the last page!" --Joyce Carol Thomas, author of 2009 Coretta Scott King Honor book, The Blacker the Berry
"A compelling, civil rights tale of a young man's coming of age on the ice. Hendrickson personalizes history with unforgettable characters." -- Jewell Parker Rhodes, author of 2011 Coretta Scott King Honor book, Ninth Ward
"Having been a black hockey player in this era, I found that Cracking the Ice isn't just a very good read. It captures the prep school life completely. I felt like I was back in my old room. The hockey action comes to life. The scenes made me feel as if I were out on the ice. But this book doesn't just cover a black hockey player at a prep school; it's for anyone trying to succeed in difficult situations." -- Richard Harris
"To say I couldn't put it down doesn't say enough. A must read for every adult and young adult alike." -- Pete Webster, UNH Hockey Radio Network
"This is a terrific book and I would recommend it to anyone who likes a great story, hockey fan or not." -- Dan Hannigan, Maine Hockey Radio Network
About the Author:
Dave Hendrickson is an award winning sports writer who covered college hockey on Boston area radio station WEEI. He has also appeared regularly on New England Cable news and writes for national sports publication USCHO.com. Dave grew up in Lynn, MA, the setting for the early part of the novel, and still lives on the North Shore of Boston. Cracking the Ice is his first young adult novel.