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Children's Fiction Football

TJ and the Sports Fanatic

by (author) Hazel Hutchins

Orca Book Publishers
Initial publish date
Mar 2006
Football, Cats, Friendship
Recommended Age
9 to 12
Recommended Grade
4 to 7
Recommended Reading age
9 to 12
  • Paperback / softback

    Publish Date
    Mar 2006
    List Price
  • eBook

    Publish Date
    Mar 2006
    List Price

Classroom Resources

Download Teacher’s Guide

Where to buy it


TJ Barnes is back, playing with his crazy cats, T-Rex and Alaska, helping out in his parents' hardware store and goofing around with his best friend, Seymour.

When Seymour announces that he has signed them both up for a football team, TJ fears the worst. Neither of them is huge or mean or able to tackle, catch, throw, run or kick a ball down a field, but Seymour is determined to be a star. With the help of a stack of library books, TJ starts to understand the game but it takes more than a few books to figure out what’s wrong with his best friend.

TJ and the Sports Fanatic is the fourth of five books in the series.

About the author


Hazel Hutckins est l'auteure de plus de 30 livres pour enfants, y compris l'album illustré primé Mattland, une œuvre qui est aussi illustrée par Duan Petricic. Hazel vit à Canmore, en Alberta.


After many years of juggling writing, raising her children, and making a home with her now deceased husband, Hazel spends her days writing full time. Winner of Writer's Guild of Alberta Award for Children's Literature, she has written children's short fiction for Chirp, Chickadee, and Cricket.
When answering where the inspiration for A Second is a Hiccup came from, Hazel comments, "I decided to see if I could find other ways to describe time. When the writing began to flow in poetic form - and when I came up with the engaging title line A Second is a Hiccup - I knew I had begun a labor of love. The book went through many one version I actually brought in centuries and eons! Good grief! But it finally returned to exactly what it should be...immediate, simple and close-to-home. It is my sincere hope that children of all types will enjoy finding and celebrating, among the pages, the many ways they spend their time."

Hazel Hutchins' profile page


  • Nominated, Golden Eagle Children’s Choice
  • Nominated, Forest of Reading Silver Birch Fiction Award
  • Commended, Canadian Children's Book Centre (CCBC) Our Choice

Excerpt: TJ and the Sports Fanatic (by (author) Hazel Hutchins)

Seymour went into deep-think mode. One eyebrow went up and one eyebrow went down. Mr. G. looked at me for a translation. I had no idea what was going on in Seymour's head. When it came to football, things were definitely weird.

Editorial Reviews

"Appealing to the sensibilities of boys...interesting facts about football and and enlightening...Highly Recommended."

CM Magazine

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