Charlie is hurting. He feels alone and he is struggling to deal with grief. His father died. This is the father who would take off two weeks every summer to hit the road with his son to explore state capital cities in the U.S. It was their thing. Nobody expected the promise of those trips to be cut short by death. But Charlie's dad is gone and Charlie just can't get his mind around it. He can't figure out what to do with all the pain and all the anger he is holding. There is no dad to help him through those places.
If you have read Crossed and Booked then you know the twin brothers, Jordan and Josh and you even know Filthy McNasty. You have shed a tear or two over the passing of their father, Chuck Bell, a man who taught his sons what to value and how to handle themselves on their journey through life. This is their heritage. But who was this man? Who was Chuck Bell? How did he become the father he was to these young men? Where did he learn his values? What shaped him?
This is the story of Chuck Bell, or Charlie Bell as he is when we first meet him. It's a story of pain and how it can drive you in the wrong direction as you struggle to escape it. It's a story of family and how generations can come together to hold and heal. It's a story of paths you can choose. His two best friends, Skinny and C.J., give him the fork in the road. Will he set his sights on owning a pair of Air Jordans or will he set his sights on working hard for what he wants to become? Can he find a way to work through his pain instead of stuffing it down? It's a story that illuminates the power of who you choose to surround you.
If you've read the first two books, you know the ending and you know the kind father he was to his boys. It turns out he could have chosen a path of self-destruction. He could have followed the path to quick and easy. The tempting quick fix of his friend's cousin Ivan is lurking just on the edges of his life. Sure he wants the Air Jordans to give him the confidence that he can fly and sting like a bee. He dreams of being like all those heroes. In this one summer his life transforms.
Invisible to us, the choices of our parents and grandparents surround us. This is a beautiful story about something called being resilient. It's a story of having something painful in your life and being able to come back from it...to rebound from it.
Every child needs this book. Every child needs to understand the power of pain and the power of choice. Every child deserves to know that family and friends can be there for you when you are truly lost to yourself. Told through the lens of basketball, this is a book that reaches to the reader with hope and compassion and a promise.
416 pages (a very quick read) 978-0544868137 Ages 10-14
Recommended by: Barb Langridge, abookandahug.com
From the New York Times bestselling author Kwame Alexander comes Rebound, a dynamic novel in verse and companion to his Newbery Award-winner, The Crossover, illustrated with striking graphic novel panels.
Before Josh and Jordan Bell were streaking up and down the court, their father was learning his own moves. In this prequel to Newbery Medal winner The Crossover, Chuck Bell takes center stage, as readers get a glimpse of his childhood and how he became the jazz music worshiping, basketball star his sons look up to.
A novel in verse with all the impact and rhythm readers have come to expect from Kwame Alexander, Rebound will go back in time to visit the childhood of Chuck "Da Man" Bell during one pivotal summer when young Charlie is sent to stay with his grandparents where he discovers basketball and learns more about his family's past. --from the publisher