From the Who Got Game? series

Fast-break fun for both students and non-students of the game.

Two-time Kirkus Prize winner Barnes highlights some potentially unfamiliar records and achievements on the court.

The author positively pours out facts and anecdotes about lesser known, or at least less celebrated, “batters, buzzer-beaters, and record-breakers”—from tributes to the early barnstorming “Black Fives” and Wataru “Wat” Misaka, the NBA’s first non-white player, to accounts of Scott Skiles’ 30 assists in 1990 and Bernard King, who came back to finish a Hall of Fame career after shattering a knee. Despite noting that basketball is enjoyed across the world, “from Boston to Barcelona to Beijing,” he seldom glances overseas, and notwithstanding a nod to Title IX, the scattered accounts of the feats of women high school, collegiate, or WNBA players and teams definitely don’t get equal time. Still, with contagious enthusiasm, he invites readers to marvel at trick dunks and full-court shots of the past, weird games such as the NCAA contest that ended up 258-141, and other wonders—not to mention the careers of players, coaches, and even announcers and executives from the usual marquee names to coach Pat Summitt (1,098 wins), A.C. Green (1,192 consecutive games), and 5’3” pro Tyrone “Muggsy” Bogues. Even non-fans will enjoy the breathless tales of miracle comebacks Barnes dishes out on his way to a closing pep talk. The mostly brown-skinned cartoon figures in Tuya’s action scenes properly underscore the narrative tone by sporting fierce game faces or appropriately amazed expressions.

Fast-break fun for both students and non-students of the game. (glossary, web sites) (Nonfiction. 10-13)

Pub Date: Jan. 2, 2024

ISBN: 9781523505548

Page Count: 176

Publisher: Workman

Review Posted Online: Nov. 18, 2023

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Dec. 15, 2023



If Freedman wrote the history textbooks, we would have many more historians. Beginning with an engrossing description of the Boston Tea Party in 1773, he brings the reader the lives of the American colonists and the events leading up to the break with England. The narrative approach to history reads like a good story, yet Freedman tucks in the data that give depth to it. The inclusion of all the people who lived during those times and the roles they played, whether small or large are acknowledged with dignity. The story moves backwards from the Boston Tea Party to the beginning of the European settlement of what they called the New World, and then proceeds chronologically to the signing of the Declaration. “Your Rights and Mine” traces the influence of the document from its inception to the present ending with Martin Luther King and the Civil Rights movement of the 1960s. The full text of the Declaration and a reproduction of the original are included. A chronology of events and an index are helpful to the young researcher. Another interesting feature is “Visiting the Declaration of Independence.” It contains a short review of what happened to the document in the years after it was written, a useful Web site, and a description of how it is displayed and protected today at the National Archives building in Washington, D.C. Illustrations from the period add interest and detail. An excellent addition to the American history collection and an engrossing read. (Nonfiction. 9-13)

Pub Date: Oct. 1, 2000

ISBN: 0-8234-1448-5

Page Count: 112

Publisher: Holiday House

Review Posted Online: June 24, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Oct. 1, 2000




Logically pointing out that the American cowboy archetype didn’t spring up from nowhere, Sandler, author of Cowboys (1994) and other volumes in the superficial, if luxuriously illustrated, “Library of Congress Book” series, looks back over 400 years of cattle tending in North America. His coverage ranges from the livestock carried on Columbus’s second voyage to today’s herding-by-helicopter operations. Here, too, the generous array of dramatic early prints, paintings, and photos are more likely to capture readers’ imaginations than the generality-ridden text. But among his vague comments about the characters, values, and culture passed by Mexican vaqueros to later arrivals from the Eastern US, Sadler intersperses nods to the gauchos, llaneros, and other South American “cowmen,” plus the paniolos of Hawaii, and the renowned African-American cowboys. He also decries the role film and popular literature have played in suppressing the vaqueros’ place in the history of the American West. He tackles an uncommon topic, and will broaden the historical perspective of many young cowboy fans, but his glance at modern vaqueros seems to stop at this country’s borders. Young readers will get a far more detailed, vivid picture of vaquero life and work from the cowboy classics in his annotated bibliography. (Notes, glossary, index) (Nonfiction. 10-12)

Pub Date: Jan. 15, 2001

ISBN: 0-8050-6019-7

Page Count: 116

Publisher: Henry Holt

Review Posted Online: May 19, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Nov. 15, 2000

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