Monday, August 11, 2014

Sasquatch in the Paint by Kareem Abdul-Jabbar and Raymond Obstfeld –ESSENTIAL

Abdul-Jabbar, Kareem and Obstfeld, Raymond  Sasquatch in the Paint (Streetball Crew Book#1)  272 pgs. Disney-Hyperion, 2013. $16.99. 

Content: Language: PG (0 swears); Mature Content: PG Violence: PG.

Theo is an under the radar academic geek, but over the summer break, he finds himself 6 inches taller. Suddenly he is recruited by the middle school basketball team, a sport he is interested in but has zero experience with. He finds himself pulled between obligations, basketball and the science clubs knowledge tournament. Theo tries to get better at basketball by attending street pick-up ball but ends up getting hit, threatened, and meeting an unusual girl named Rain. It seems like nothing is going right for Theo at home either, including his dad starting to date again after Theo’s mom’s death and his cousin Gavin accusing him of theft. Will Theo be able to make some decisions and discover the ability to focus on what’s important for him?

I actually really don’t like sports at all, but this book was fantastic! Since the main character is learning basketball, I wasn’t left behind by technical sports jargon. The dialogue in the book is top notch, some of the most authentic I have seen, you really feel like a 13 year old again. The characters are fully fleshed out and believable, especially Theo. I was so invested that I felt stressed out about what was to come for Theo, and had to brace myself to read the conclusion! That rarely happens for me, only with a great book! I recommend specifically for Middle school and older because of the race issues and related language, which is presented with amazing finesse. The cover and title are both appealing as well, sure to be a hit!

MS – ESSENTIAL Reviewer: Stephanie Elementary School Librarian & Author.

No comments: