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  • H.O.R.S.E.: A Game of Basketball and Imagination
  • Elizabeth Bush
Myers, Christopher . H.O.R.S.E.: A Game of Basketball and Imagination; written and illus. by Christopher Myers. Egmont, 2012. [40p]. ISBN 978-1-60684-218-8 $18.99 Reviewed from galleys R Gr. 2-5.

If you own a basketball, you've played Horse, the court equivalent of follow-the-leader: "Right, we call it 'ghost' where I come from. But the game's the same. You start." And thus begins a wild round of one-upmanship in which each of two friends plans his opening shot. The bald dude starts off modestly enough: "I'm going to skyhook this ball clear across the court into that basket, with my eyes closed, standing on one foot, over my left shoulder." Not to be outdone, the headbanded dude orchestrates a shot that involves climbing up 437 flights of stairs and calculating wind speed, and then "I will stand on one tiny tiptoe, balance myself on the topmost corner of the 437-story building, and shoot a perfect layup, with my left . . . foot." And they're just getting started. Of course, neither gets around to actually taking a shot, but they don't care and neither will the reader, because it's all about talking a little good-humored smack. The only thing stretchier than Myers' lanky buddies is their imagination, and the literal renderings of their outrageous plans (how about an airborne tongue dunk? Or a trip into space, with a cameo by Neil deGrasse Tyson?) are as hilarious as the patter. In a closing note Myers explains this work is inspired by games of Horse played with his photographer friend, Kambui, and this tribute to friendship incorporates snippets of Kambui's photographic medium with Myers' painting. The freewheeling format and broadly popular topic makes this eminently saleable as either a readalone or readaloud, and kids familiar with Myers' illustrations of Zora Neale Hurston's whoppers in Lies and Other Tall Tales (BCCB 1/06) will welcome his latest venture into hyperbole.



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p. 160
Launched on MUSE
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