In this heartwarming a story, we learn that -- as the book says -- friendships don’t always last forever. Morgan and Sam, best friends since first grade, have a date with destiny. Because in 33 minutes, Morgan is going to kick Sam’s butt. Taking TAMADE (The Absolute Most Amazing Day Ever [The day they became the best team ever in Alien Wars history by playing through the entire game in one day]) and their history into consideration, you’d never think these two would become worst enemies. All Sam is trying to do is delay the fight to figure a way to save his butt, try to act as smooth as possible around the pretty girl, and to just make ends meet with Morgan. Read along as we hear Sam’s commentary during the countdown and him recollecting on his experiences with Morgan.
33 Minutes (Aladdin), by Todd Hasak-Lowy, is a hilarious story depicting how quickly friendships can fall apart. It hilariously shows the types of people you’ll find in middle school: the nerd who you’d rarely see doing any sports (I consider myself to be one of those); the smart girl that is attractive to the nerd; the troublemaker who influences big, tough kids to do pranks and the suspension worthy feats so they don’t have to; and the all around jock who turns on their friends. 33 Minutes skillfully doesn’t take away from the story when going into a flashback, and always keeps the reader interested by adding in creative and funny doodles, and reminiscing all the good times the ex-friends used to have. I give this book five stars out of five, recommending it to anyone who is going into or already in middle school, bullied children, or anyone who wants to learn how cope with a “friendship breakup.”
Todd Hasak-Lowy is the author for multiple adult novels, such as the Task of This Translator. He is currently living in Illinois with his wife and two daughters, teaching Hebrew Literature at the university of Florida. ◊
Ian Buchsbaum is a kid who loves to read. In fact, the only thing he loves more than reading is writing. He loves writing about books -- and he’s already writing one of his own.