Punching the Air

Category: Book
By (author): Salaam, Yusef
By (author): Zoboi, Ibi
Subject:  YOUNG ADULT FICTION / General
  YOUNG ADULT FICTION / Law & Crime
  YOUNG ADULT FICTION / Social Themes / Prejudice & Racism
  YOUNG ADULT FICTION / Social Themes / Violence
Audience: young adult
Publisher: HarperCollins
Published: December 2021
Format: Book-paperback
Pages: 400
Size: 8.00in x 5.31in
Our Price:
$ 15.99
Availability:
In stock

Additional Notes

From The Publisher*

New York Times and USA Today bestseller * Goodreads Finalist for Best Teen Book of the Year * Time Magazine Best Book of the Year * Publishers Weekly Best Book of the Year * Shelf Awareness Best Book of the Year  * School Library Journal Best Book of the Year * Kirkus Best Book of the Year * New York Public Library Best Book of the Year

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. One of the most acclaimed YA novels of the year, this New York Times and USA Today bestseller is a must-read for fans of Jason Reynolds, Walter Dean Myers, and Elizabeth Acevedo and is now available in paperback! 

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, because of a biased system he's seen as disruptive and unmotivated. 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 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.

Review Quote*"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."
Review Quote*"Awardworthy. Soul-stirring. A must-read." 
Review Quote*"Prescient and sobering, Zoboi's book is a vital story for young readers in a tumultuous time."
Review Quote*"Zoboi and Salaam together craft a powerful indictment of institutional racism and mass incarceration through the imagined experience of Amal, a Black, Muslim 16-year-old facing imprisonment."
Review Quote*"The sympathetic, nuanced portrayal of this young man will have readers holding out hope until the novel's end."
Review Quote*"A mesmerizing novel-in-verse. The poems-sharp, uninhibited and full of metaphors and sensory language-quickly establish Amal's voice, laying bare the anger, despair, hope and talent it holds. Amal's experience of abuse by the system, as well as his peers', incites raw outrage, but his artistic self-expression offers a subtle yet significant kind of hope. It is a hope borne of anger, that knows the full depths of injustice and still dreams of a better future."
Review Quote*"A wrenching novel whose story, told in verse, is both urgent and heartbreakingly familiar....Amal's name is the Arabic word for 'hope.' That is what this book ultimately offers, too. Everyone should read it."
Review Quote*"Punching the Air highlights that wrongful convictions, the school-to-prison pipeline and the fear mongering of Black bodies is etched in the United States Constitution itself, ironically in the Thirteenth Amendment that criminalizes slavery but simultaneously creates an entirely new system of enslavement: the American prison system. It is not easy to break these topics down to adults, never mind children. But Punching the Air does so effectively through verse that feels honest and clear."
Review Quote*"Amal's voice is often poetic and compelling, and the details of life in NYC juvie are laceratingly vivid. An engaging and accessible read sure to provoke discussion, perhaps in conjunction with a factual exploration of Salaam's own experiences or in partnership with Myers' Monster."