The Cage in New York City – home of the best pick-up basketball games ever, where street basketball means “no blood, no foul.” Many viewpoints, many stories from the players and the watchers and the wannabes on this hot July day.
It starts early with a “Cage Run” as Boo and Fish hit the court to face that Waco guy who’s cooler than ice and twice as scary. The day heats up as players leave and enter the pick-up games, like hotshot ESPN who’s always showing off in case any college scouts are watching and “Mira Mira” who’s fast even if he’s shorter than most.
Outside the Cage’s chainlink wall, some watchers want in the game – like Ruben, who hates being called Kid, who knows that “Practice Don’t Make Perfect” only playing will. That guy with the video camera is making the documentary that will get him into NYU film school -“He’s Gotta Have It” - the heart of the players, the meaning of the game.
The games get hotter as quality players show up, turning into a “Head Game” as ‘Nique is the only girl on the court and blasts past ESPN, dishes passes to Waco. Do the legends of street ball watch from the bench in the back? Will the TV crew suddenly arriving really shut down the game for some public-service announcement filming or will they use real players in “The Shoot”?
A whole day in The Cage, with so many ways to see the game, to be the game, in this great collective work by top fiction writers who love basketball and its fans and its place in the heart of New York City. Short stories by Walter Dean Myers, Bruce Brooks, Willie Perdomo, Sharon G. Flake, Robert Burleigh, Rita Williams-Garcia, Joseph Bruchac, Adam Rapp, Robert Lipsyte, and Marc Aronson are fittingly connected by poems and photographs of The Cage by Charles R. Smith Jr.
Recommended by: Katy Manck, Librarian-at-Large (retired academic/corporate/school librarian), Gilmer, Texas, USA
Nine of YA literature’s top writers, including Walter Dean Myers, Rita Williams-Garcia, Adam Rapp, Joseph Bruchac, and Sharon Flake reveal how it all goes down in a searing collection of short stories, in which each one picks up where the previous one ends. Characters weave in and out of narratives, perspectives change, and emotions play out for a fluid and fast-paced ode to the game of street basketball. Crackling with humor, grit, and streetball philosophy, and featuring poems and photographs by Charles R. Smith Jr., this anthology is a slam dunk.--from the publisher
176 pages 978-0763660680 Ages 14-17
Keywords: short stories, anthology, sports, basketball, 14 year old, 15 year old, 16 year old, 17 year old