|Power forward (Zayd Saleem, chasing the dream)|
Author: Khan, Hena
Fourth-grader Zayd yearns to play basketball on the Gold Team, but when he skips orchestra rehearsal to practice, his parents forbid anything basketball-related, and tryouts are coming soon.
|Illustrator:||Comport, Sally Wern|
|Accelerated Reader Information:|
Interest Level: MG
Reading Level: 3.80
Points: 2.0 Quiz: 195119
Kirkus Reviews (03/01/18)
School Library Journal (05/01/18)
Full Text Reviews:
Booklist - 04/01/2018 Zayd Saleem plans on being the first Pakistani American player to make it to the NBA. Unfortunately, he has a few roadblocks to overcome. First, he is the shortest kid in his class, which has resulted in being placed on the D team at school, instead of the vaunted Gold Team where his best friends play. Second, his parents expect him to become a master violin player by attending extra practices before school. So Zayd begins skipping violin practice to play basketball. His parents, of course, naturally wise up and are furious enough to ban him from tryouts for Gold Team. Will Zayd be able to make them understand that basketball is his true passion? Khan nicely incorporates many Urdu words into Zayd’s narrative (though note that there is not a dictionary to provide translations). Overall, this is a promising series opener featuring a main character with a refreshing perspective, which will appeal to plenty of sports-loving readers. - Copyright 2018 Booklist.
School Library Journal - 05/01/2018 Gr 3–6—Fourth grader Zayd Saleem is facing challenges, both on and off the basketball court. He is torn between obeying his parents by taking violin lessons and getting ready for tryouts to be a part of the Gold Team with his best friend Adam. Zayd makes an important decision: if he skips morning violin rehearsals, he can get in twice the practice for the tryouts. After two weeks, he is discovered and in big trouble. He must somehow convince his parents that playing basketball is suitable for a Muslim boy. Bits of jovial humor from characters like Jamal, Zayd's uncle, and Naano, his grandmother, add to the lightheartedness of this straightforward tale. VERDICT A fine purchase, especially where young readers are transitioning from chapter books to longer middle grade sports fiction.—Martha Rico, El Paso ISD, TX - Copyright 2018 Publishers Weekly, Library Journal and/or School Library Journal used with permission.