Headlock

Book review by
Kate Pavao, Common Sense Media
Headlock Book Poster Image
Solid wrestling read for teen boys has heart.

Parents say

age 16+
Based on 1 review

Kids say

age 16+
Based on 2 reviews

A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this book.

Positive Messages

Kyle tries hard to be a good person, putting his life on hold to take care of his grandmother. But in the end, he learns he has to make time to pursue his own dreams.

Violence

The book is about wrestling -- but the worst thing that happens is that a wrestler drops his pet rat on the protagonist.

Sex

Kyle talks about having sex with his girlfriend and jokes around about sex with another wrestler. His girlfriend -- who also wrestles -- participates in a "Lingerie Match" with 12 other women.

Language

Some swearing, like "s--t" and "bitch."

Consumerism

Lots of TV shows are mentioned.

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

Kyle's girlfriend has an alcohol problem; another wrestler passes out after taking Ephedra.

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that this book is about wrestling, but there isn't much actual violence inside or outside the ring. Kyle and his girlfriend have sex on the brain a lot -- and she participates in a lingerie-clad wrestling match. His girlfriend has a problem with alcohol, and another wrestler passes out after taking Ephedra.

User Reviews

  • Parents say
  • Kids say
Adult Written byASDAS April 9, 2008
I LIOKE HEADLOCK
Teen, 15 years old Written bymotorstorm April 9, 2008

this is a must read for anyone who likes wretsling

sorry but all i can say is i read it twice and i love it!
Teen, 16 years old Written byFutureWWEDiva2010 August 16, 2010

Needs to be more books like this one!

I love it! I have been looking for a normal novel that shows how people get into pro wrestling cuz I'm a pro wrestler in training! This is awesome! Thank y... Continue reading

What's the story?

Kyle quits gymnastics to learn to become a professional wrestler. He quickly becomes a rising star -- and scores a great girlfriend -- but when his beloved grandmother starts to need constant care, he puts his own dreams on hold for her. Will he ever get back in the ring?

Is it any good?

There's a sweet lesson in HEADLOCK about making time to go after your own dreams -- even when they're as crazy as wanting to become a professional wrestler. Readers will most appreciate the author's realistic depiction of wrestling. Kyle's wrestling ambition isn't just a device to draw readers in. The author provides great details about wrestling moves and seems to know -- and value -- the culture. She even compares it to Kabuki theater.

The story ties up loose ends a little too quickly in the end, but Kyle's big heart will win readers over -- as will the cast of crazy characters. This may be a good pick for any reluctant (male) readers you have in your house.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about how books are marketed to boys. Did the title and cover art make you pick up this book, or was it something else? If someone had told you that the book was about a boy who takes care of his aging grandmother, would you have been as interested?

Book details

Top advice and articles

Common Sense Media's unbiased ratings are created by expert reviewers and aren't influenced by the product's creators or by any of our funders, affiliates, or partners.

See how we rate

About these links

Common Sense Media, a nonprofit organization, earns a small affiliate fee from Amazon or iTunes when you use our links to make a purchase. Thank you for your support.

Read more

Our ratings are based on child development best practices. We display the minimum age for which content is developmentally appropriate. The star rating reflects overall quality and learning potential.

Learn how we rate