Spike It, Mo!

Penguin. (Mo Jackson: Bk. 7). Jan. 2022. 32p. Tr $15.99. ISBN 9780593352700.
Gr 1-3–Adler and Ricks continue to introduce students to sports and reading in their latest addition to Mo’s active world. Mo’s journeys into different sports continue with this latest tale featuring volleyball. Mo and his family, who are Black, are at the beach, but when Mo realizes it’s too cold to swim, he and his dad join a volleyball game instead. As each side serves and spikes, readers are introduced to volleyball basics. The plot is simple, while still being fun and engaging, keeping readers’ attention by having them guess how the game is going to go. The vocabulary is also easy to follow, using small words and even introducing some volleyball-specific terminology while providing plenty of context clues. Rick’s illustrations help struggling readers who need some pictorial assistance, while also helping all early readers understand the world of Mo and the new vocabulary they are being introduced to.
VERDICT A great early reader for fans of volleyball, sports in general, or Mo.

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