It exposes white privilege. It indicts white supremacy. It problemetizes the cult of football. What’s not to love?
Tangerine* by Edward Bloor is written from the perspective of a sort of disabled (but not really? that’s part of the plot) middle school who is white, frail, very smart, repressed, and an excellent soccer player. He is forced to leave his white suburban school and either attend a nearby Catholic school, or alternatively, go to the “inner-city” tough kid not very white school. He readily picks the latter, for some very good reasons, and there he meets his first real fears, his first real friends, and sets about making and breaking heroes.
There are also tangerines, the fruit, which play a special role in the narrative.
This is a book that should totally be banned and burned if you don’t want kids to examine their own privilege, think about fairness and class, or confront racism. Or be mean to football. It is one of those books often assigned in middle school, and this is the time we are reading all the middle school books. Fits the bill as quick and entertaining, meaningful adult reading.