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Macmillan Childrens Publishing Group


The Benchwarmers Series (Volume 1)

John Feinstein

Square Fish


The path to victory starts on the sidelines, in this fast-paced new middle grade series from #1 New York Times bestselling sportwriting powerhouse John Feinstein.

Twelve-year-old Jeff Michaels, son of a Philadelphia TV sports reporter, is just learning to play soccer on the new sixth-grade team at his middle school. Andrea Carillo has fought her way onto the squad, but the coach doesn’t think girls should play with boys, so she’s riding the bench with Jeff—even though she’s one of the best players.

With Jeff’s help, the Philly media gets ahold of the story, and suddenly Andi is all over the news as she shows her worth on the soccer field. But amid bullies, threats, and a media firestorm, will Andi’s skills and Jeff’s perseverance be enough to save the season?

An action-packed novel about two kids who may be "benchwarmers," but prove themselves naturals when it comes to teamwork, friendship, and finding a path to victory.


“Michaels, what the heck are you doing here?”

The mere sound of Ron Arlow’s voice made Jeff Michaels cringe.

He had just pulled on a blue-and-gold gym shirt with MERION MUSTANGS emblazoned across the...

Praise for Benchwarmers

“Detailed play-by-play of the middle school soccer matches . . . will be thrilling for soccer buffs . . . Andi's grit and refusal to back down in the face of sexism are inspirational and reflect the real challenges facing student athletes today.” —Kirkus Reviews

“[Feinstein] writes engaging characters and offers readers in-depth play-by-play sports action that results in a fun, fast-paced story that will appeal to readers who can't get enough sports fiction.” —Booklist


Reviews from Goodreads

John Feinstein

John Feinstein is the author of more than thirty books, including two #1 New York Times bestsellers: A Season on the Brink and A Good Walk Spoiled. He is also the author of numerous books for young readers. His first young adult mystery, Last Shot, won the Edgar Allen Poe Award. John also works for The Washington Post, The Golf Channel, Sirius XM Radio and Comcast Sportsnet.

image of John Feinsteino
Christine Feinstein

Square Fish

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