Wednesday, July 24, 2019

#Review & #Giveaway: Swing by Five Book Blog Tour by Kwame Alexander with Mary Rand Hess #BLINKSummerReading19 #YA #poetry@KwameAlexander @theffbc

Things usually do not go as planned for seventeen-year-old Noah. He and his best friend, Walt(aka Swing), have been cut from the high school baseball team for the third year in a row, and it looks like Noah’s love interest since third grade, Sam, will never take it past the “best friend”zone. Noah would love to retire his bat and accept the status quo, but Walt has big plans for them both, which include making the best baseball comeback ever, getting the girl, and finally finding cool. To go from lovelorn to ladies’ men, Walt introduces Noah toa relationship guruhis DairyQueen-employed cousin, Floydand the always informative Woohoo Woman Podcast. Noah is reluctant, but decides fate may be intervening when he discovers more than just his mom’s birthday gift at the thrift shop. Inside the vintage Keepall is a gold mine of love letters from the1960s. Walt is sure these letters and the podcasts are just what Noah needs to communicate his true feelings to Sam. To Noah, the letters are more: an initiation to the curious rhythms of love and jazz, as well as a way for him and Walt to embrace their own kind of cool. While Walt is hitting balls out of the park and catching the eye of the baseball coach, Noah composes anonymous love letters to Sam in an attempt to write his way into her heart. But as things are looking up for Noah and Walt, a chain of events alters everything Noah knows to be true about love, friendship, sacrifice, and fate.

My review:
Author, Kwame Alexander, takes on some tough issues happening even as I write this review. The issues of teen angst, race relations, prejudices, and police brutality are all addressed in this book.
He also writes about hope and dreams as the main characters Walt and Noah navigate through life.

As I began to read, I enjoyed the way the book was put together. This book is an interesting YA book as it was all written in loose prose and the chapters outlined in poetic titles that made sense. The book also shuttled me back, that is somewhat, to my own high school days.

The subject matter was easy to follow along with but at times hard to take, as again, the same issues are happening today. Walt aka Swing who embraced and chose to have a, "Hug Life" instead of a hateful manner was a delightful character who's friendship with Noah was outstanding. 

I saw myself as having a friend in Walt. But I saw also how privilege can be. The two obviously lived very different kinds of life that would ultimately end in me crying at the end of the book. I won't tell you my dear readers but I will say this, I was truly devastated in what happened.

Overall, this book is 4 stars for me. I look forward to reading more books from this author.

Disclosure: I received a copy of this book from the author. The review here is 100% my own opinions and may differ from yours.

Where to find the author:

Kwame Alexander is a poet, educator, and New York Times Bestselling author of 21 books, including THE CROSSOVER, which received the 2015 John Newbery Medal for the Most Distinguished Contribution to American literature for Children, the Coretta Scott King Author Award Honor, The NCTE Charlotte Huck Honor, the Lee Bennett Hopkins Poetry Award, and the Passaic Poetry Prize. Kwame writes for children of all ages. His other works include SURF'S UP, a picture book; BOOKED, a middle grade novel; and He Said She Said, a YA novel.

Kwame believes that poetry can change the world, and he uses it to inspire and empower young people through his PAGE TO STAGE Writing and Publishing Program released by Scholastic. A regular speaker at colleges and conferences in the U.S., he also travels the world planting seeds of literary love (Singapore, Brazil, Italy, France, Shanghai, etc.). Recently, Alexander led a delegation of 20 writers and activists to Ghana, where they delivered books, built a library, and provided literacy professional development to 300 teachers, as a part of LEAP for Ghana, an International literacy program he co-founded.


Mary Rand Hess is a poet, screenwriter, mixed-media artist, and New York Times bestselling author of notable and award-winning books such as Solo and Swing(Blink YA), coauthored with Newbery Medalist Kwame Alexander, Animal Ark: Celebrating Our Wild World in Poetry and Pictures (National Geographic Children’s Books), also coauthored with Kwame Alexander and Deanna Nikaido, Little Larry Goes to School (National Geographic Children’s Books), written with renowned photographer and filmmaker, Gerry Ellis, and the forthcoming picture book, The One and Only Wolfgang: From Pet Rescue to One Big Happy Family, coauthored with Steve Greig of @wolfgang2242 Instagram fame. She is currently at work on a few novels in verse, picture books, and screenplays.

Schedule Can Be Found HERE

Michelle from Reading Authors is not responsible for the giveaway. Prize distribution is by Blink Summer Reading Tours. Please refer to them for further rules and regulations.

Prize: 5 BLINK Summer Reading Tour Book Bundles (A Touch of Gold, Meet the Sky, No Place Like Here, Pretty In Punxsutawney, and Swing by Kwame Alexander) (USA) Starts: 7/22/19 Ends: 8/9/19 

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