Parents need to know that New York Times Bestseller “Rebound” is a standalone prequel to Kwame Alexander’s Newbery Medal and Coretta Scott King Honor Book “The Crossover.” This powerful novel in verse is set in the late 1980s and focuses on the childhood experiences of Chuck, who will grow up to become the beloved dad of “The Crossover’s” Jordan and Josh. It deals with the death of a parent and grief along with normal teen-growth drama. Parents should be prepared to discuss coping with loss and feelings, as well as choosing the right people to allow in your life.
WHAT’S THE STORY?
Twelve year old Chuck Bell may never rebound. After losing his dad, he’s a ship without an anchor, drifting through life angry, sad, and lost. Then his mom ships him off to live with his grandparents for the summer, where he’s forced to listen to jazz, work, and play basketball — a game he sucks at — with his cousin Roxie. Just when Chuck is certain life will never be good again, he learns that it’s all about taking your shot when you can.
IS IT ANY GOOD?
This sweet, surprising, gut-wrenchingly powerful novel in verse moves to the beat of life. It’s a slice of life captured in words that have the ability to jump, slam, and slide across the page. Accompanied by powerful graphic novel sections illustrated by Dawud Anyabwile, “Rebound” lets us get to know the wonderful kid who grew up to become Josh and Jordan’s beloved dad from “The Crossover.” It has laugh-out-loud moments and moments when Chuck and his family’s tender vulnerability is hard to witness. Both boys and girls will love this prequel’s realism, and adults will love the poetry experience and positive messages.
RATING AND CONTENT
Recommended for ages 10 and older
Quality: 5 out of 5
Educational value: 4 out of 5
Positive messages: 5 out of 5
Positive role models: 5 out of 5
Violence: 1 out of 5
Sex: 0 out of 5
Language: 1 out of 5
Drinking, drugs, and smoking: 2 out of 5
Consumerism: 1 out of 5
Author: Kwame Alexander
Genre: Coming of age
Publisher: HMH Books for Young Readers
Publication date: April 2, 2018
Number of pages: 416