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Punching the air / written by Ibi Zoboi with Yusef Salaam ; illustrations by Omar T. Pasha.

Zoboi, Ibi Aanu, (author.). Salaam, Yusef, (author.). Pasha, Omar T., (illustrator.).

Available copies

  • 1 of 4 copies available at Kenton County.

Current holds

0 current holds with 4 total copies.

Location Call Number / Copy Notes Barcode Shelving Location Status Due Date
Covington Branch YA ZOBOI I (Text) 33126019952690 New YA Fiction Checked out 04/21/2021
Covington Branch YA ZOBOI I (Text) 33126025033592 New YA Fiction Available -
Erlanger Branch YA ZOBOI I (Text) 33126019952682 New YA Fiction Checked out 05/08/2021
Wm. E. Durr Branch YA ZOBOI I (Text) 33126024726428 New YA Fiction Checked out 05/10/2021

Record details

  • ISBN: 9780062996480 (hardcover)
  • ISBN: 0062996487 (hardcover)
  • ISBN: 9780008422141 (pbk.)
  • ISBN: 0008422141 (pbk.)
  • Physical Description: 386 pages : illustrations ; 22 cm
  • Edition: First edition.
  • Publisher: New York, NY : Balzer & Bray, an imprint of HarperCollins Publishers, [2020]

Content descriptions

Summary, etc.:
From award-winning, bestselling author Ibi Zoboi and prison reform activist Yusef Salaam of the Exonerated Five comes a powerful YA novel in verse about a boy who is wrongfully incarcerated. The story that I thought was my life didn't start on the day I was born. Amal Shahid has always been an artist and a poet. But even in a diverse art school, he's seen as disruptive and unmotivated by a biased system. Then one fateful night, an altercation in a gentrifying neighborhood escalates into tragedy. "Boys just being boys" turns out to be true only when those boys are white. The story that I think will be my life starts today. Suddenly, at just sixteen years old, Amal's bright future is upended: he is convicted of a crime he didn't commit and sent to prison. Despair and rage almost sink him until he turns to the refuge of his words, his art. This never should have been his story. But can he change it' With spellbinding lyricism, award-winning author Ibi Zoboi and prison reform activist Yusef Salaam tell a moving and deeply profound story about how one boy is able to maintain his humanity and fight for the truth, in a system designed to strip him of both.
Subject: African Americans > Fiction.
Teenage boys > Fiction.
Artists > Fiction.
False imprisonment > Fiction.
Male prisoners > Fiction.
Discrimination in criminal justice administration > Fiction.
Novels in verse.

  • School Library Journal Reviews : SLJ Reviews 2020 August

    Gr 8 Up—Sixteen-year-old Amal is tried and convicted of an act of violence against a white boy. While there is a sense that he might not have done what he was accused of doing, it is unimportant whether this is the case for the book to work. Through Amal's first-person verse narration, readers learn about his aspirations as a poet and artist, as well as his experience entering the prison system as a young Black man. It is clear that Amal has had a complex relationship with his education, particularly with his art teacher, who clearly saw his talent but also did not work very hard to support Amal's burgeoning interest, and did a bad job of being a character witness at his trial. The authors do an excellent job of showing how the prison experience can dehumanize young men and how their inherent talents can be overshadowed by their feelings of powerlessness and rage. Coauthored by Zoboi and Salaam, who is one of the Exonerated Five and, as such, has firsthand experience of serving an unfair and unjust prison sentence, this book is not a memoir. Instead, it can be seen as an important statement about widespread experiences and the prison industrial complex, rather than the depiction of a single, notable case. What is clear is that this is not an isolated story. VERDICT This book will be Walter Dean Myers's Monster for a new generation of teens. An important, powerful, and beautiful novel that should be an essential purchase for any library that serves teens.—Kristin Lee Anderson, Jackson County Lib. Svcs., OR

    Copyright 2020 School Library Journal.

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