It looked like every black kid in the school was going out for the team. And then me. Pale skin, long nose, sandy brown hair, and a cowlick that won’t stay down. I don’t know what I expected, but it wasn’t being the only white guy.
Black kids play basketball. White kids wrestle. That’s the way it is at Franklin High School and especially in Ray Wisniewski’s neighborhood, the tight knit Polish-American town of Greenville, New Jersey. But Ray’s got a passion for basketball, even after the varsity coach cuts him two years in a row. When a new coach comes on the scene, Ray’s luck rebounds, but now he has to deal with Robert, the team’s high scorer, a kid who hates Ray simply because he’s white.
As Ray fights to make his way onto the Franklin High Varsity, he finds that things are not as simple as he once thought—that a kind friend can be full of hate. A beautiful girl can be ugly inside. A well-intentioned coach can cause more harm than good. And prejudice can be defined in many ways in a world that isn’t black-and-white.
I like basketball so I wanted to read something other than mystery, suspense, romance, and thriller books that I normally find myself reading. This book intrigued me because it was about a white boy trying out for a sport that typically is played by black boys. So to me it was a different side of what we normally hear or read about. We always hear prejudice towards black people, but we next to never hear them about white people. This book shares some of those prejudices from a different point of view.
The overall book was written well, however reading about basketball was rather boring for me. I like watching it, but now I know I don’t like reading a book about it. About 70% of it was about this white boy trying out for his basketball team in his school. It was great reading about the relationships he was building with these black guys and how girls he dated even reacted to them. He wouldn’t even share everything with his parents since they had the same stereotype against the black kids as others did. But this guy makes the team and ends up making some great decisions at the end which result in some great unlikely friendships.