• Beat the Band

  • By: Don Calame
  • Narrated by: Nick Podehl
  • Length: 8 hrs and 9 mins
  • 4.5 out of 5 stars (24 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

Cooper Redmond has only one thing on his mind: tagging as many bases as possible by the end of sophomore year. He’s already picked out a prime target: the divine Prudence Nash, whose sexy serpent tattoo haunts his dreams. But when Coop is paired with the infamous “Hot Dog” Helen for a semester-long health project on safe sex, his hopes of making it to the Majors are suddenly DOA. It’s going to take something seriously epic to resuscitate his reputation - something like winning the Battle of the Bands with his best buds, Matt and Sean.

There’s just one problem: they totally suck.

Get ready for riffs on hot girls, health class, and social hell in this hilarious follow-up to Swim the Fly.

©2010 Don Calame (P)2010 Brilliance Audio, Inc.

What listeners say about Beat the Band

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    5 out of 5 stars
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I "Arnold Murphy Bologna Dare" you not to love it!

“You won’t be sorry; I promise… this is going to be epic!” –Cooper Redmond… Famous last words, yes? Maybe, but that all depends on how you look at it. Even when you lose, sometimes you win something much better.

Although in the same vein of funny as SWIM THE FLY with most of the same cast, BEAT THE BAND (Swim The Fly #2) is a completely different story. To be honest the fact that this second book is written from Cooper’s pov had me going in a bit weary from the start. Coop’s brazen and often overly juvenile personality, albeit hysterical at times, made him a much less likable character in comparison to Matt, who was just so darn endearing as he narrated his way through book one. But I have to say those concerns were completely a non issue. I’m not saying there weren’t some blatantly foul displays of inappropriate male adolescents from Mr. Cooper, because there most definitely were, more than a few and they were laugh-out-loud funny. But we also find there is a lot more to Coop than fart jokes and double entendres in this second installment. Fortunately author Don Calame saw fit to introduce us to the many layers of Cooper Redmond; as he navigates his way through embarrassing Sex Ed Health Class assignments, the school pariah, an out of work dad, hawt mean girls, his first kiss, the battle of the bands and his conscious.

This is a definite equal opportunity series that teens and adults of both genders will relate to and enjoy. I’m a 32 year old mom of 2 boys and I loved both books. I highly recommend the audio versions, which have provided countless hours of entertainment and distraction for me on the evil treadmill. Narrator Nick Podehl expertly gives a voice and a very distinct individuality to each character. I really hope Calame plans to round out the group and put out a third book from Sean's pov.

1 person found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

My favorite book in all of existence. Period.

This is a spoiler heavy review.








Cooper Redmond is crude, egotistical, and extremely rude. At the same time, he is heartfelt, pure, and kind. You won't see the latter until well into the book, but it's worth it. This book is outright hilarious and, at times, outright weird and quite gross. Even through all that, the ending is the best of any book I've ever read. The beginning starts off with Cooper dodging the pariah of the school, Helen Harriwick, whom he's saddled with for a health project. He thinks all the rumors that have been spread about her are true, and he has no clue what she's been through. He learns, though. Cooper drags his friends into a battle of the bands competition in order to attain rock god status and get out from the shadow that Helen's reputation has put him under. There are many amazing moments in this book, but one stands out to me above all the rest. There's a point in the book where Coop and Helen are playing "would you rather," and she asks him if he would rather be blind or deaf, he says blind, saying that he absolutely hates it when things are too quiet. This might seem arbitrary to most until you realize that, later on, he is willing to blow his, and everyone else's, ears out by shoving a microphone up to a speaker(thereby creating a feedback loop that creates an extremely loud screech) just to stand up for her. He was willing to give up his ability to ever listen to music, a person's voice, and the sounds of nature ever again. Not to mention, he was willing to become a pariah just to be with Helen. Cooper moves heaven and earth just to save Helen from ridicule and, by the end of the book, is the kind of person we should all aspire to be. It's a truly stark contrast to him at the beginning of the book and an amazing transformation of his character. Bravo, Don Calame. While all your booms are masterpieces, this one is truly your pinnacle. I eagerly await the next installment after Call the Shots

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars

Arnold Murphy's Bologna Dare

An outstanding sequel to Swim the Fly! Like the Harry Potter characters, I loved reconnecting with these fellows and their exploits. Nick Podehl's narration is outstanding and those character voices will be forever ingrained in my head. Should there be another in this series, Nick Podehl better do the narration.

Swim the Fly was written from the perspective of Matt, who is one of the three boys whose exploits we hilariously follow. It is in this character's voice that the author/narrator tells the story.

Beat the Band, is from the perspective of Coop and therefore it is in Coop's voice the story is told. I don't ever recall this character perspective switch in any series I've previously read. It was initially a surprise since the first book had me loving the Matt character. His switch to a supporting character in this book took a little getting used to as it was so unexpected. It was this unique perspective switch that helped spark even more interest in this book and I quickly came to like Coop just as much.

There is one major character left, Sean. I sincerely hope the author has at least one more story in him regarding this series. I would love to read/listen to another from Sean's perspective so that I may love each of the characters equally.

Again, like Swim the Fly this was laugh-out-loud, young male adolescent humor which is just my speed but this time with a touch of seriousness and sincerity. I loved it.