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Perpetual Check Book Review

Perpetual Check by Rich Wallace
Courtesy of Knopf
Perpetual Check Book Review - Reviewed by Kidzworld on Apr 10, 2009
( Rating: 4 Star Rating)

Competitive brothers Zeke and Randy have made it to the semifinals in the Pennsylvania Chess Tournament. But now they have to play each other. Will their rocky relationship survive the duel? Find out in Rich Wallace’s Perpetual Check.

Author: Rich Wallace

Brothers Zeke and Randy have always been competitive. Zeke is an athletic sports nut who gets his hot-shot attitude from their father. Meanwhile, Zeke’s younger brother Randy is more of a laidback, observant, keep-a-bag-of-M&Ms-beside-your-bed kind of kid. Zeke envies Randy, though he’d never admit it. Randy has a girlfriend and a quiet confidence. Unlike Zeke, he doesn’t need to prove himself by excelling in sports or acting like a big shot.


Chess Geniuses

Despite their differences, the brothers have one thing in common—they’re both talented chess players. They can see the games unfold before they happen, calculating the potential in every move. So it’s no wonder they’re both competing for the same prize—a spot in the state championship chess tournament for a chance to win $5000.


Brother vs. Brother

In the regional’s, the boys encounter some stiff competition. But they each squeeze by with enough wins to reach the semifinals. Then they must face each other. They’ve played together thousands of times, but this game means something more. More than a win, more than spot in state championship. It’s about pride and forgiveness. Years of butting heads have led to this moment. The boys must let go of the hostility that their competitive father brings to their relationship. They need to ignore his sideline coaching and focus on the game. One will win, and one will lose. But who will it be?

The Bottom Line

At only 112 pages, Perpetual Check is a quick and fantastic read. The story explores so much more than chess. It looks at family dynamics and the strained bond between two brothers. Zeke and Randy learn to overcome their father’s hotheaded, competitive nature and accept each other for who they are.

Don’t miss Rich Wallace’s other books on competitive sports, including Wrestling Sturbridge, Shots on Goal, Playing Without a Ball, One Good Punch and Losing Is Not an Option.


Pertpetual Check Rating: 4


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