Castle Cranshaw’s Track Journey | Teen Ink

Castle Cranshaw’s Track Journey

October 20, 2021
By Anonymous

Ghost by Jason Reynolds (208 pages) is the story of Castle Cranshaw’s track story. Castle tells his story to us about his past, present, and what he hopes to be in his future. We get to see through his eyes and see the world how he does. In doing this, it is revealed that his father chased him and his mother out of the house with a gun, leading them to Mr. Charles' store. Since then, he has become good friends with Mr. Charles, a great runner, and he was traumatized from that experience. He keeps this information to himself, but it is no secret to the people around him that he struggles. He has to deal with bullying at school, and the things he has are obviously not as good quality as the others around him. One day, while walking around town. He watches the local track team warm up, and decides to show them that they aren’t that good. He has a race against Lu, one of the team's bright young stars, and he almost beats him. This catches the attention of the coach, and he asks him to sign up to prepare him for his basketball career. Castle goes with it, but ends up loving track for what it is, not just training for basketball. He develops good relationships with the team members and coach over time, and he begins to find a home in the team. 

One of Castle's teammates is Lu Richardson. He is presented as a rival earlier in the book, but we get to see him develop into a brother figure to Castle as the book goes on. In the 2nd chapter, we hear Lu say, “Yeah, man, the track is for runners, not people who want to pretend like they runners.” Castle pushes himself to be as good, and if not, better than Lu. By doing that, they form a strong bond, and are a healthy source of competition for each other. 

Another interesting character in the book is Coach Ottis Brody. He is Castle’s track coach, but throughout the book he and Castle get closer and closer. Because Castle had some problems with his father, we could see Coach becoming a father figure and inspiration to Castle. He views the team as a family, and he feels like it is his job to take care of the athletes on the team, especially Castle. He relates to his problems, and sees himself in Castle. He actively tries to help Castle make better choices, and punish him when he makes mistakes.

When Castle is telling Coach about his past, and why he did some of the bad things that he did, Coach Says,“You can't run away from who you are, but what you can do is run toward who you want to be.”  Castle takes a second to think about those words. He thinks about how he is such a good runner because he ran from his father. He thinks about how he can take steps to change his life. He spent his whole life struggling, and he never had goals to make his life better. He always spent his life running away from the problems that he faces, leading to him making some bad choices throughout the book. Hearing these words helped Castle understand that you can’t let your past define who you are now, you have to look to the future and think of who you want to become. 

Finally, this is a 4-star book. It is told through the perspective of a kid, so you get an idea of how views the world and why he is doing things. If it was told through a different perspective, the reader wouldn’t like Castle as much as they would if you were reading it from 3rd person, because he makes a lot of bad choices with good intentions Readers will enjoy this book because it discusses struggles with money, facing the consequences of your actions, and empathizing for others similar situations. The only knock that I have on the book is how short it is. It feels like everything happens so fast in the end, and a few more chapters would pace things out a little bit. If you want to find out what happens to Castle and his track career, make sure that you pick up Ghost as soon as possible!


(738 Words)

The author's comments:

This is a book reveiw about Ghost by Jason Renolds. It odesn't spoil the ending of the book, but it gives pros and cons about the book, and great reasons why you should read it. If you are looking for a reason to read Ghost, this book reveiw is for you!

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