Reviewed by Sally Kruger aka "Readingjunky" for TeensReadToo.com
BULL RIDER by Class of 2K9 author Suzanne Morgan Williams offers a unique combination of topics - rodeo bull riding and the Iraq War.
Young Cam O'Mara comes from a ranching, bull riding family, but his interest leans more toward skateboarding. Bull riding has never really held any attraction for him, at least until now.
The O'Mara family gets the dreaded news that their oldest son, Ben, has been wounded while fighting in Iraq - and life changes for everyone. The explosion of an IED caused brain trauma and paralysis. Ben returns home but is in for months of hospitalization and therapy.
Cam always looked up to his older brother, and seeing him in such a weakened condition, he is at a loss about how to help his brother or provide the encouragement needed for a successful recovery. One thing does occur to Cam - he could honor his brother's name and maybe provide needed money for the family if he took on the challenge of riding a massive bull named Ugly.
Readers are in for a bit of a wild ride as Cam explores his newfound interest and at the same time tries to keep up his grades, hang on to friendships, and do his work on the ranch.
BULL RIDER reveals a family facing difficult times as they work to support an injured family member and keep the family business from being destroyed by financial hardship. There is a strong message of the determination and sacrifice required to hold a family together through tough times.