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Grade 4–8—Stewart and Kennedy offer an engaging history of the sport, followed by profiles of some of the most impressive shots of all time and the players who made them. Whether they are discussing amazing feats at the college or professional level, the tone is conversational and informative. As students are reading the chapter on different types of shots, they might be surprised to learn that the slam dunk was originally considered poor sportsmanship. Plenty of action photographs complement the text. The authors point out that basketball is the one sport that women have played as long as men, and the book achieves a good balance of coverage of men's and women's accomplishments in the game. This title is not as broad in scope as John Hareas's Basketball (DK, 2003) or Keltie Thomas's How Basketball Works (Maple Tree, 2005), but it is a solid addition. Casual fans and die-hard followers of the game will find a wide range of information in an accessible and compact package.—Kim Dare, Fairfax County Public Schools, VA
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With an emphasis on basketball shooting and a belief that young fans want to know more about the sport in general, this colorful book provides a little of everything. Following a chapter on basketball history, the discussion moves to “Buzzer Beaters,” memorable game-winning shots. Here, each double-page spread gives a few paragraphs of narrative about a game as well as photos of the action and short, illustrated profiles of notable players. A presentation on types of shots is peppered with the names of men and women who perfected them. The last chapters round up the most remarkable shots, discuss scoring feats, and give related stats. The wide pages offer plenty of room for well-spaced text, sidebars, and illustrations. Each page has at least one picture, with mostly color photos, and the many action shots make the book more exciting. With information on women’s and men’s basketball at both collegiate and professional levels, this is a nice addition to sports collections. Grades 5-8. --Carolyn PhelanSee all Editorial Reviews