Alexander, Kwame. Rebound.
4Q * 5P * M * J * S
Alexander, Kwame. Rebound. Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, April 2018. 416p. $16.99. 978-0-544-86813-7.
Charlie and his dad had plans to get new shoes and embark on a hiking vacation for the summer of 1988. That was before his dad died unexpectedly. While Charlie struggles with his loss, he makes some poor choices, so his mom, not sure how to handle him and still grieving as well, sends him to live with his dad's parents for the summer. Grandaddy calls him "Chuck" and makes him help with all the chores, but Grandma makes the best food. During this summer, Charlie begins to unpack the baggage he has been carrying and realizes that he is not the only one who hurts because of his dad's death. This could be the start of moving on and growing up in this book about love, loss, family, friends, and overcoming obstacles.
While a companion to The Crossover (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 2014/VOYA August 2014), Rebound can easily be read on its own. Using basketball metaphors for rebounding and moving on after losses, plenty of 1980s references, and occasional graphic-novel-style pages adds freshness to Alexander's already unique novel-in-verse style. The dialog of those talking to Charlie is italicized, and once that is figured out, the reading flows smoothly. The end of the book jumps to the summer of 2018, when Charlie's (a.k.a. Chuck "Da Man" Bell from The Crossover) twin sons are about to go to college (thus tying the two books together). Those who already read The Crossover will charge back to reread it. This book will bounce off the shelves and enhance both middle grade and young adult collections.--Dianna Geers.