The Great Teeth of the Young Lions

Rated 5.00/5 based on 10 reviews
Haunted by a student suicide, the sports-hating English teacher Mr. Batty tries to coach a rowdy junior high track team with raw talent. But as students vandalize his mailbox at night, Batty’s troubles multiply when a fist-swinging mentally-disabled boy named Cage joins the team and threatens Batty’s chance to win the championship track meet and justify his otherwise failed life. More

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About Mark Squires

Mark Squires worked in concrete construction for 20 years before becoming a teacher at Pima High School in Pima, Arizona, where he taught English for 14 years. Currently, he is the principal at Pima Junior High. He has a Bachelors Degree in Education with majors in History and English, and he has a Masters Degree in Educational Leadership. He has been married to Nanette Haws Squires since 1979.

For much of his life, Squires lived in Mesa, Arizona, a few miles from the Superstition Mountains where he often hiked. He read many of the documentary-style books about the fabled Lost Dutchman's Gold Mine, which eventually led to the writing of the novel The Dutchman.

Before acquiring a permanent teaching job, Squires was a substitute teacher for several school districts, and he met a variety of teachers, some of whom were burnt out and miserable. This spawned the idea of a teacher who hates students, and who is forced to coach a track team with a wild mentally-disabled boy. The result is The Great Teeth of the Young Lions, a novel that confronts the demands of love and the challenges of being a teacher.

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Reviews

Review by: Lori Hoopes on Aug. 23, 2011 :
What a great book! Couldn't put it down! I laughed, I cried and read it within 2 days! thank you for such a great read! Go give someone a compliment today!
(reviewed long after purchase)

Review by: Ashley Scorse on Aug. 22, 2011 :
This was a very thought provoking book and a great read for teachers. It reminded me of the importance of teaching while giving great life lessons as well. I think that it is important as an educator, or any person who is influential in the lives of others, to fight on the side of good. A few positive comments is definitely something each person needs to give and receive.
(reviewed within a month of purchase)

Review by: Kalem Norton on Aug. 16, 2011 :
Great book, very well written. Poor mailbox! I really liked the characters, after teaching in a small community it was very easy to relate to Mr. Batty.
(reviewed within a month of purchase)

Review by: Kalem Norton on Aug. 16, 2011 :
Great book, very well written. Poor mailbox! I really liked the characters, after teaching in a small community it was very easy to relate to Mr. Batty.
(reviewed within a month of purchase)

Review by: Jeni Anderson on Aug. 15, 2011 :
I loved this book! The characters are authentic and real. I would swear the author has listened in to conversations between my 13 year old son and his friends as inspiration for dialogue between his junior high boy characters. (A hilarious description of a unique pancake-eating ability comes to mind!) The story is funny, thought provoking, and inspiring. Mr. Batty deals with situations that real teachers face every day. I understand why he became closed off and numb, treating each day of teaching as a war between teacher and students. But I found myself rooting for him to find a way to connect with them and regain his passion for teaching. As so often happens in life, his journey takes him down an unexpected path --- which happens to be just what he needs to begin to find inside himself the teacher he really is. An inspiring book!
(reviewed within a month of purchase)

Review by: Betty Haws on Aug. 11, 2011 : (no rating)
Review by Betty Haws August 11, 2011
Mr. Batty's journey as he began as a young, enthusiastic and caring teacher to tired, apathetic and critical and then to a reflective, sensitive and much more experienced teacher is a very well-written story about the challenges of working with young people in the field of education. It also shows the impact of parents, teachers and administration in directing student's attitudes as they struggle to find out who they are and where they fit into the scheme of things. The author describes the challenges that they all encounter in gaining knowledge and understanding not only in the academic fields but in their social skills as they interact with each other in the classroom and sports arena.
I could not stop reading this book. Mr. Squires has the ability to make one feel they are experiencing every situation he finds himself in. It also makes us appreciate those who choose to teach and influence the young people of today. I recommend this book highly to everyone as we all are affected by the educational system in one way or another.
(reviewed within a month of purchase)

Review by: thompson21284 on Aug. 03, 2011 :
As a person who is going in to the classroom to teach children with special needs, i found this book a very real and entertaining take on a boy i may encounter in my own classroom. Squires' small town feel and very human characters in a continual struggle for acceptance and encouragement really pull you in to the emotions of the charachters. there are many great thought provoking and memorable phrases in this book. I will follow Mr. Dell's advice to rememeber that every student/person has a rainbow inside them. even when you cant see it, it is there and the journey is worth every storm that comes from the tumult of life. The rewards are there and you have to be patient and optimistic to reap the rewards. I am going to recommend this book to any one who ever has or will teach special needs students.
(reviewed within a week of purchase)

Review by: Heidi Squires on July 22, 2011 :
The Great Teeth of the Young Lions was fantastic. Colorful characters, difficult choices, and humorous situations all presented to you in a creative setting. I loved seeing Lizard Bump High School through the cynical eyes of Mr. Batty. I loved being there while he taught his students, battled with his students, and learned the lessons of life right alongside them. This is a story of promise to all those running an impossible race, lost hope can always be won back. I enjoyed this book very much and highly recommend it to anyone.
(reviewed within a week of purchase)

Review by: Athena Jones on July 12, 2011 :
I finished the book in a day and loved it. Great message about the struggles teachers go through. I definitely recommend it!
(reviewed within a week of purchase)

Review by: Heather Ray on July 08, 2011 :
What a great motivator and reminder to anyone who has ever worked in education of the true purpose behind why they do what they do for their students! That final track meet at the end of this book is my favorite!! Had me on the edge of my seat the whole time! I love what the teacher ends up learning in the book and the mailbox episodes are fun little interludes throughout... I highly recommend it to anyone!
(reviewed the day of purchase)

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