The Crossover: Graphic Novel

The Crossover: Graphic Novel

The Crossover: Graphic Novel
Kwame Alexander

Andersen Press Ltd

ISBN 9781783449590

'With a bolt of lightning on my kicks . . . The court is SIZZLING. My sweat is DRIZZLING. Stop all that quivering. 'Cuz tonight I'm delivering,' raps twelve-year-old Josh Bell. Thanks to their dad, he and his twin brother, Jordan, are kings on the court. But Josh has more than basketball in his blood - he's got mad beats, too, which help him find his rhythm when it's all on the line. See the Bell family in a whole new light through Dawud Anyabwile's dynamic illustrations as the brothers' winning season unfolds, and the world as they know it begins to change.

Librarian's Book choice


The Crossover: Graphic Novel4/5

The Crossover: Graphic Novel

Kwame Alexander


Josh and his twin brother Jordan are the school's star basketball players. They are close, but other than their love of basketball, they don't have a lot in common - as Josh says, 'If we didn't love each other, we'd hate each other'. As the biggest game of the year approaches, tension between them builds, culminating in a major bust up fuelled by frustration, jealousy and family secrets.

The Crossover is a verse novel about a boy trying his best to cope with the trials and tribulations of middle school, sibling rivalries, crushes, hair and tragedy, with his love of basketball and music to help him through. Originally published in 2015, this new graphic novel version features Kwame Alexander's full original text, brought to life by Dawud Anyabwile's vibrant illustrations.

Alexander is a master of these powerful and emotional verse novels, utilising a range of poetic styles throughout the book. The striking orange and black illustrations perfectly complement the story, adding a dynamic and kinetic energy.

Not being a basketball expert, a lot of the lingo and references went over my head - but fortunately the illustrations did a great job of getting the meaning across in most cases. It's a great example to show the difference illustrations can make to a book - get students to compare the original to graphic novel, and identify the strengths of each one.

This book has such a wide appeal. I'd recommend it to readers who are sports fans, reluctant readers, graphic novel fans, poetry lovers, those after stories with emotional weight to them. I can see this new edition bringing Kwame Alexander's books to an even broader audience, and make an already popular and accessible novel even more so.

224 pages / Ages 11+ / Reviewed by Dan Katz, school librarian

Reviewed by: Dan Katz