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Month in review

Reviews
All the Birds in the Sky by Charlie Jane Anders
Ascender, Volume 1: The Haunted Galaxy by Jeff Lemire and Dustin Nguyen
Dear Martin by Nic Stone Death by Tea by Alex Erickson
Dragon Hoops by Gene Luen Yang
The Electric Heir by Victoria Lee
The Empress of Salt and Fortune by Nghi Vo
The Faceless Old Woman Who Secretly Lives In Your Home by Joseph Fink and Jeffrey Cranor
Ghost Squad by Claribel A. Ortega
If da Vinci Painted a Dinosaur by Amy Newbold
Go to Sleep (I Miss You) by Lucy Knisley
Gone with the Whisker by Laurie Cass
The Haunting of Vancouver Island by Shanon Sinn
The Haunting on Heliotrope Lane by Carolyn Keene
He Loves Me, He Loves Me Not by Robin Mayhall
Heartwood Hotel: Home Again by Kallie George
The Legend of Korra: Ruins of the Empire Part Three by Michael Dante DiMartino
The Loveliest Chocolate Shop in Paris by Jenny Colgan
Lyle and the Birthday Party by Bernard Waber
Mimi Lee Gets a Clue by Jennifer J. Chow
Nate Expectations by Tim Federle
No Mallets Intended by Victoria Hamilton
Shadow of the Batgirl by Sarah Kuhn and Nicole Goux
Stand Up, Yumi Chung! by Jessica Kim
This is Rome by Miroslav Sasek
The Unbinding of Mary Reade by Miriam McNamara
The Underground Railroad by Colson Whitehead
Verse and Vengeance by Amanda Flower
We Are the Wildcats by Siobhan Vivian
When Katie Met Cassidy by Camille Perri

Miscellaneous
March 2020 Sources
March 2020 Summary

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Rating System

5 stars: Completely enjoyable or compelling
4 stars: Good but flawed
3 stars: Average
2 stars: OK
1 star: Did not finish

Reading Challenges

Canadian Book Challenge: 2019-2020

Beat the Backlist 2020



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Dragon Hoops: 04/16/20

Dragon Hoops

Dragon Hoops by Gene Luen Yang chronicles Yang's last year of teaching at Bishop O'Dowd high school in Oakland. During that year he shadowed the boy's basketball team as they tried to go to State after years of misses.

I knew from American Born Chinese (2006) that Yang was local to me, meaning broadly, San Francisco Bay Area. I hadn't appreciated just how local until I read Dragon Hoops. He covers familiar places and familiar towns. Our local high school is even mentioned.

Dragon Hoops is the longest book Yang has written, as far as I can tell. It's 440 pages. Despite it's length it's also one of the best and most compelling reads I've read by him.

The book has three nonfictional narrative threads. The first is the Dragon's 2015 championship bid. The second is the history of basketball and its spread around the world. The third is Yang's transition from full time teacher and part time graphic novelist to full time graphic novelist/comic book author.

Like Yang, I wasn't a sports person in school. I'm still not. Like Yang, I'm an artist. Through this book, through his asides about the sport's development, through his interviews with the players and coaches, and through his own memoir elements, I felt myself cheering for the Dragons (even though they are rivals of our high school).

Of course, with the book covering a five year old event, one can easily Google the outcome. I hope you don't. Let the momentum Yang builds carry you along. Let yourself get excited. Let your self cheer them.

Five stars

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