Project Description

The Final Cut Cover Art
Discussion Guide

The Final Cut

Part of Fred Bowen Sports Story Series

by Fred Bowen

Four friends who share a love of basketball have to go through tryouts for the school team. But will they all make the team?

Ryan, Zeke, Eli, and Miles love sports, especially basketball. When it’s time for basketball team tryouts, they practice together, compete in a local 3-on-3 tournament, and carefully compute their chances of making the team. The tryouts are a test not only of their athletic skills, but also of their friendship. In the end, each boy learns how to cope with winning and losing (both on and off the court), the value of practice and competition, and the true meaning of friendship.

Author Fred Bowen continues his Sports Story series with full court, play-by-play action that’s sure to keep readers on the edge of their seats! In the sports history epilogue, readers learn about other famous players, like Michael Jordan, who didn’t make their high school basketball teams the first time around. For more on this title, visit the Sports Story series website here.

Format: Paperback
Price: $6.95
ISBN: 978-1-56145-510-2
Publication Date: 10/1/2009
Page Count: 103
Size: 5-1/4″ x 7-1/2″
Age Range: 7 – 12
Language: English
Format: eBook
ISBN: 978-1-56145-646-8
Age Range: 7 – 12
Language: English

Purchase this eBook through the following vendors:


AR Level: 4.3
F&P: GRL Q, Gr 4, Genre RF
Lexile: 600L
Themes: Basketball, Friendship, Perseverence
BISAC 1: JUV032020 JUVENILE FICTION / Sports & Recreation / Basketball
BISAC 2: JUV039060 JUVENILE FICTION / Social Issues / Friendship


“[Bowen’s] pacing is excellent and he has a knack for efficient evocation.” ―The Washington Post

“Any youngster who has been involved in this kind of situation will identify with the characters’ obsessive interest in evaluating the competition and enhancing their own chances of making the team. For better or worse, the self-image of adolescent boys is often closely tied to their success in sports and one of the strengths of the book is the openness with which Bowen examines this issue. There is a particularly moving passage in which the protagonist’s stepfather recounts his experience in being cut from a school team in a manner that makes it clear that the incident still bothers him…. the novel is briskly paced and would be a good bet for use with sports-minded reluctant readers.” ―School Library Journal

“Bowen is a natural when it comes to writing sports stories and informing his readers about the past. These books are perfect for kids ages 8 to 12.” ―Newsday

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Meet the Author

Fred Bowen is the author of Peachtree’s popular Fred Bowen Sports Story series. A lifelong sports fanatic, he has coached youth league baseball, basketball, and soccer. His kids’ sports column “The Score” appears each week in the KidsPost section of the Washington Post. Bowen lives in Maryland. You can visit his website here.