The Crossover is the winner of the 2015 Newbery medal. A verse novel about twin brothers Josh and Jordan (JB), both almost thirteen, both keen basketball players and rivals on and off the court. As Josh says:
If we didn’t love each other, we’d HATE each other
Dad or Chuck “Da Man” Bell is an ex-pro who coaches the boys, mom Crystal is an assistant principal who keeps them on the straight and narrow. But when a bet leads to Josh having to cut his dreads AND the new girl in school goes for JB, Josh’s game falls apart. He ends up slamming his brother in the face and they remain estranged until a family tragedy forces them back together.
The story bounces along, the verse tight and rhythmic as the game the boys are obsessed with, interspersed with prose and their dad’s basketball rules. An effortlessly quick read, but there’s so much here it would be a shame not to savour it. 10+ Perfect for sporty types who’d rather have a ball in their hand than a book.
There’s also Booked a verse novel about Nick, a soccer obsessive which sounds equally excellent.