A National Book Award Finalist
Coretta Scott King Author Honor Book
Carnegie Medal winner
An NPR Favorite Book of 2019
A New York Times Best Children's Book of 2019
A Time Best Children's Book of 2019
A Today Show Best Kids' Book of 2019
A Washington Post Best Children's Book of 2019
A School Library Journal Best Middle Grade Book of 2019
A Publishers Weekly Best Book of 2019
A Kirkus Reviews Best Middle Grade Book of 2019
"As innovative as it is emotionally arresting." --Entertainment Weekly
Stealing pocket change.
Executing complicated handshakes.
Planning an escape.
But mostly, too busy walking home. Jason Reynolds conjures ten tales (one per block) about what happens after the dismissal bell rings, and brilliantly weaves them into one wickedly funny, piercingly poignant look at the detours we face on the walk home, and in life.
- ISBN-13: 9781481438285
- ISBN-10: 148143828X
- Publisher: Atheneum Books
- Publish Date: October 2019
- Dimensions: 8.3 x 5.7 x 0.9 inches
- Shipping Weight: 0.7 pounds
- Page Count: 208
- Reading Level: Ages 10-14
Look Both Ways
When the school bell rings and students race for the doors, where do they go? What do they do? In each of the 10 short stories that compose Look Both Ways: A Tale Told in Ten Blocks, the reader follows a different student to see what they get up to on their way home.
In “The Low Cuts Strike Again,” Bit, Francy, John John and Trista are the kids whom teachers talk about in the teachers’ lounge—“at-risk” kids who swipe loose change wherever they might find it. The Low Cuts, as the four call themselves, have something in common: their almost-bald heads, a haircut chosen in solidarity with each other and with their parents, all cancer survivors. And it’s what they do with all that loose change that shows another side of the label of “at-risk.”
In the lead story, “Water, Booger, Bears,” Jasmine and TJ challenge those who think “boys and girls can’t just be friends.” Other stories portray protagonists dealing with bullying, falling in love and struggling with anxiety.
Jason Reynolds affords loving attention to each of the characters in his large cast. Despite simple-seeming prose, his language sparkles. He writes of the Low Cuts, “Even though they were tight on time, they were loose on talk” and, “Bit put a pothole in the middle of memory lane.” Along with his previous novels, written in prose, verse and dual voices, these short stories demonstrate Reynolds’ range of superb storytelling.