Biggie by Derek Sullivan

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I received a copy of this book to review but I was not financially compensated in any way. The opinions expressed are my own and are based on my observations while reading this novel.


Biggie by Derek E. Sullivan 
Published by: Albert Whitman & Company
Publication date: March 1st 2015
Genres: Contemporary, Young Adult



Henry “Biggie” Abbott is the son of one of Finch, Iowa ‘s most famous athletes. His father was a baseball legend and his step-dad is a close second. At an obese 300+ pounds though, Biggie himself prefers classroom success to sports. As a perfectionist, he doesn’t understand why someone would be happy getting two hits in five trips to the plate. “Forty percent, that’s an F in any class,” he would say. As Biggie’s junior year begins, the girl of his dreams, Annabelle Rivers, starts to flirt with him. Hundreds of people have told him to follow in his dad’s footsteps and play ball, but Annabelle might be the one to actually convince him to try. What happens when a boy who has spent his life since fourth grade trying to remain invisible is suddenly thrust into the harsh glare of the high school spotlight?


My review:

I signed up to be a part of this book tour because I was an obese teen in high school.  While nowhere near as tall as Biggie, and therefore not weighing as much, I remember how terrible gym class was.  I can still clearly feel the terror that was having to play volleyball and having everybody laugh at you.  Sullivan did an excellent job of capturing this emotion, even though Biggie tried his best to hide how he felt.

I also enjoyed reading about how Biggie had his big plan to win the game, get the girl and be awesome.  Of course it didn’t go as he hoped, but the entire plan was exactly like how we think as teenagers.  Once again, I admire the author’s ability to capture these types of emotion in words on a page.

After reading this book, I discovered that the author had originally written it as a short story but was urged to continue on.  I am glad he did so but I can see how the piece that began as the short story would have stood by itself.  I don’t know if it was published or not in that form but I think it would be a good piece to discuss in high school literature courses.  I also feel that the book would be a way to open up a discussion about bullying, regarding how Biggie is treated by his classmates.



Purchase on:

AmazonBarnes and Noble




Derek E. Sullivan is an award-winning reporter and columnist at the Rochester Post-Bulletin in Minnesota. As a reporter, he has written more than 1,000 stories about the lives of teenagers, which he attributes to helping him find his YA voice. He has an MFA from Hamline University and lives in Minnesota with his wife and three sons.

Author links:


Follow the tour!



Tour-wide giveaway (INTL)
2x 50$ B&N Gift Cards

3x Signed copies of BIGGIE hardcover

a Rafflecopter giveaway

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  1. 18
    • Amy D on March 11, 2015 at 9:56 pm
    • Reply

    Sounds great

  2. 17
    • robyn donnelly on March 9, 2015 at 1:06 pm
    • Reply

    I hated gym and especially when we had to do swimming.

  3. 16
    • Patty wright on March 8, 2015 at 11:18 pm
    • Reply

    No tour stops near me

  4. 15
    • Diane on March 7, 2015 at 11:52 pm
    • Reply

    I look forward to reading this book, thanks for the review!

  5. 14
    • Amanda Sakovitz on March 6, 2015 at 1:24 pm
    • Reply

    Can’t wait to read this!

  6. 13
    • Alexandra A on March 6, 2015 at 7:36 am
    • Reply

    So excited to read it! 🙂

  7. 12
    • Linda Kish on March 5, 2015 at 9:39 pm
    • Reply

    I would love to read this book. It sounds like a good story.

  8. 11
    • Irma on March 5, 2015 at 3:03 am
    • Reply

    Sounds like an interesting book. Thank you!

  9. 10

    Sounds like an interesting book. Thanks for sharing your review.

  10. 9
    • Maria Sinclair on March 4, 2015 at 9:13 pm
    • Reply

    Sounds like a great book. I’m crossing my fingers on this one

  11. 8
    • deb p on March 4, 2015 at 7:44 pm
    • Reply

    Thanks for the review, 🙂

  12. 7
    • Patty H on March 4, 2015 at 5:30 pm
    • Reply

    I loved gym. It was one class that I didnt stress about.

  13. 6

    I agree that this should be required reading for HS English classes. The fact that you say that it truly sounds like it was (and I was never good at sport and always a bit chunky) makes me curious to see if this is really the case. On my TBR list.

  14. 5

    I find it especially interesting that it came from a short story but was expanded. It sounds like something I may enjoy reading!

  15. 4

    Thanks for hosting today, Maggie! 🙂

  16. 3

    Sounds like a very cute story and I can totally envision the stress, nervousness and reluctance…

  17. 2
    • Heather in VA on March 4, 2015 at 9:21 am
    • Reply

    I loved sports but was never particularly athletic. I was also a very early “bloomer” which was terrible for dressing out for gym. This looks like a book I could appreciate.

  18. 1

    Gym class was my worst fear at school too, we had to wear shorts or pe skirts and was always so conscious about my legs against the thinner girls. Great idea for a book to get the message across. Thanks for the giveaway too x

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