HOOP QUEENS by Jr. Smith

HOOP QUEENS

Age Range: 8 - 14

KIRKUS REVIEW

Twelve players of the WNBA find themselves showcased in verse, against aggressively digitized graphics that emphasize speed and power. “Fire Starter” describes Chamique Holdsclaw: “Racing / reversing / leaping / and snaking, / jumping / twirling / taking / and making / long-distance fireballs / ignited with spin. . . . ” Each poem takes one double-paged spread, the words laid out in white against bold designs, photographs of the women in action selectively colorized to make for an eye-catching, sometimes overwhelming design. Both photographs and verse highlight athleticism, not prettiness, the faces of the players straining with effort and concentration. Brief notes on each poem explain how Smith chose their guiding metaphors and betray an endearing enthusiasm and respect for these athletes. The verse itself is not uniformly successful, and the subjects’ contemporaneity put the collection at risk of dating itself, but the celebration of raw female power makes this nevertheless a worthwhile addition to collections of sports poetry. (Poetry. 8-14)

Pub Date: Aug. 1st, 2003
ISBN: 0-7636-1422-X
Page count: 40pp
Publisher: Candlewick
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: July 1st, 2003




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