Review by Alexandra Renslo
What are the rules of life?
For 12-year old Josh Bell and his twin brother Jordan, it’s basketball and family. But it’s not necessarily such a clear shot to the hoop for the Bell brothers, especially as they encounter the ups and downs of seventh grade in Kwame Alexander’s engaging young adult novel, The Crossover. When Jordan turns his attention to the new girl at school, Josh suddenly feels left out of the game. Then, as tensions erupt on the court, the brothers face a threat to their bond much greater than any basketball opponent. As they struggle to find their way back to one another, Josh and Jordan’s world is rocked by a tragedy that opens their eyes to the fragile bond of family and the consequences of ignoring one’s health.
Through hip-hop and rhythm, poems and verse, Kwame Alexander takes the reader on a thrilling ride and provides his audience with a courtside seat for the big events of life. The Crossover stretches beyond sports metaphors to provide a compelling and edge-of-your-seat story about love and loss and what it means to be a family.
The Crossover. (2014). Kwame Alexander. Houghton Mifflin Harcourt.
Alexandra Renslo is a licensed teacher pursuing her Masters of Education in English Language Arts after working a first career in journalism. In addition to reading and writing, Alexandra loves to spend time outdoors and believes in the therapeutic qualities of nature and sunshine.