Books

BOOK REVIEW: ‘On Point: Zayd Saleem, Chasing the Dream’ by Hena Khan

c.2018, Simon and Schuster Kids​
$16.99 ($22.99 Canada​)
130 pages

In your lifetime, you’ve done many amazing things.

You learned to walk. Imagine how hard that was, and you did it! You learned to make words and put them into sentences, which is no easy feat, either. You know how to get to school, do math, read, and play ball. But, as in the new book “On Point” by Hena Khan, could something be holding you back from greatness?

For weeks and weeks before tryouts, Zayd Saleem practiced his shots, dribbles, and layups for a better chance at joining the best fourth-grade basketball team in the whole entire league. No kid was happier than Zayd when he finally made it — and the bonus was that his best friend, Adam, was on the team, too.

And that was great — it gave Zayd more time to hang out with Adam, and it allowed them more time to play ball. But then the basketball team started doing poorly, losing games by a lot of points. Adam was the team captain, but he began hanging out with some other, older boys who preferred football.

Zayd was afraid that his best friend had lost interest in hoops, especially when Adam skipped basketball practice a couple of times, and that made Zayd sad. He figured the team was as good as done, but then Coach dropped a bombshell: Adam was out for awhile and Zayd was on point!

But how could that be? Zayd wasn’t sure how to tell Coach that he wasn’t ready! He wasn’t aggressive enough or fast enough to move the ball along in play. He wasn’t nearly as good as Adam, but with Adam gone, what were the choices?

Practice, practice, practice. That was the only option, and as Zayd thought about an upcoming game, he also thought about his beloved Jamal Mamoo’s predicament: Jamal Mamoo had recently gotten engaged but everybody had an opinion about the wedding. Zayd could tell that Jamal Mamoo and Nadia Aunty were not happy about their ceremony becoming something they didn’t want. He practiced and thought, until the answer was finally clear. Was it possible that the solution for both of them was the same?

Here’s the first thought about “On Point”: though it’s based in basketball, your child doesn’t have to be a basketball fan to like it.

Indeed, author Hena Khan is careful to use correct terms in this hoops book, but they (and other words) are quietly explained within the story itself, usually by its main character. Readers unfamiliar with b-ball are even schooled on the title’s meaning, but not in a manner that’s off-putting to kids who already know.

That’s perhaps what’s going to put this book in a youngster’s hands. What will keep it there is the story itself, which is one of tradition, confidence and learning to lead, but it’s not a preachy message.

All around, that makes “On Point” a truly appealing book, both for kids and for parents who want subtle lessons learned. If that’s true for your 7- to 10-year-old, then this book should do it.

Tags
Show More

Related Articles

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


By submitting this form, you are consenting to receive marketing emails from: Washington Informer Newspaper, 3117 Martin Luther King Jr. Ave SE, Washington, DC, 20032, http://www.washingtoninformer.com. You can revoke your consent to receive emails at any time by using the SafeUnsubscribe® link, found at the bottom of every email. Emails are serviced by Constant Contact

Back to top button

My News Matters to me - Washington Informer Donations

Be a Part of The Washington Informer Legacy

A donation of your choice empowers our journalists to continue the work to better inform, educate and empower you through technology and resources that you use.

Click Here Today to Support Black Press and be a part of the Legacy!

Subscribe today for free and be the first to have news and information delivered directly to your inbox.


By submitting this form, you are consenting to receive marketing emails from: Washington Informer Newspaper, 3117 Martin Luther King Jr. Ave SE, Washington, DC, 20032, http://www.washingtoninformer.com. You can revoke your consent to receive emails at any time by using the SafeUnsubscribe® link, found at the bottom of every email. Emails are serviced by Constant Contact
Close

Adblock Detected

Please consider supporting us by disabling your ad blocker