Booked by Kwame AlexanderNational Book Award Long List
New York Times Bestseller
Like lightning/you strike/fast and free/legs zoom/down field/eyes fixed/on the checkered ball/on the goal/ten yards to go/can’t nobody stop you/
can’t nobody cop you…
In this follow-up to the Newbery-winning novel THE CROSSOVER, soccer, family, love, and friendship, take center stage as twelve-year-old Nick learns the power of words as he wrestles with problems at home, stands up to a bully, and tries to impress the girl of his dreams. Helping him along are his best friend and sometimes teammate Coby, and The Mac, a rapping librarian who gives Nick inspiring books to read.
This electric and heartfelt novel-in-verse by poet Kwame Alexander bends and breaks as it captures all the thrills and setbacks, action and emotion of a World Cup match!
Sign up for our newsletters! This is not because of the overly spectacular events in the tale, but because of the magical use of poetry in telling an otherwise unremarkable story. Nick is an average boy of 13 who likes football and hates books. Forced by his word-loving father to read dictionaries as a hobby, Nick tries to escape words wherever he can. This is until he realizes words are his best weapon in getting the girl, beating the bullies and rebuilding the bonds between him and his father. The challenges Nick faces throughout the story are portrayed through his eyes and, therefore, his words.