The Crossover by Kwame Alexander

8306857With his book, The Crossover, author Kwame Alexander gives us a sizzling, rhythmic, story through a mix of free verse and hip-hop poetry.  Through the eyes of high school basketball star Josh Bell, Alexander recounts the story of Josh and his twin brother Jordan, as they navigate life on and off the court.

Yes, The Crossover is about basketball. But it’s also a vibrant coming-of-age story about two competitive black brothers.  From the book’s opening section “Warm-Up” to its closing “Overtime,” Josh creates a collection of poetic vignettes from both Josh’s basketball and family life.
Josh’s poetry flows through him like electricity, delivering a powerful emotional jolt that paints a realistic picture of the life of a talented young basketball star.  His words bounce across the pages in all sizes, shapes, and angles, allowing the reader to become immersed in Josh’s world–

Josh’s poetry flows through him like electricity, delivering a powerful emotional jolt that paints a realistic picture of the life of a talented young basketball star.  His words bounce across the pages in all sizes, shapes, and angles, allowing the reader to become immersed in Josh’s world – a world where his brother’s girlfriend messes up their brotherhood, and a heart problem messes up their dad’s fatherhood. As he journeys through each game, Josh also reveals a series of Basketball Rules for the court and life.  He shares tips like “When you stop playing your game you’ve already lost” and “If you miss enough of life’s free throws you will pay in the end.”

Yes, there is sadness in the book, so don’t be surprised if you cry a bit.  But despite the difficult moments, there is always hope.  There is hope that before the buzzer sounds, you will make the winning lay-up or free throw.
So read this book!  Become part of the roaring crowd!  You’ll hear every swish!  Your heart will pound!  And you will experience each time Josh makes a clean crossover–both in the game and in life.

So read this book!  Become part of the roaring crowd!  You’ll hear every swish!  Your heart will pound!  And you will experience each time Josh makes a clean crossover–both in the game and in life.

~ Jeanelle Wheeler

Alexander, K. (2017). Crossover. Place of publication not identified: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt.

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