Punching the Air

October 31, 2020
Punching the Air

From award-winning, bestselling author Ibi Zoboi andprison reform activist Yusef Salaam of the Exonerated Five comes apowerful YA novel in verse about a boy who is wrongfullyincarcerated. Perfect for fans of Jason Reynolds, Walter DeanMyers, and Elizabeth Acevedo. The story that I thoughtwas my lifedidn’t start on the dayI was born Amal Shahid has always been an artist and a poet. But even in adiverse art school, he’s seen as disruptive and unmotivated by abiased system. Then one fateful night, an altercation in agentrifying neighborhood escalates into tragedy. “Boys just beingboys” turns out to be true only when those boys arewhite. The story that I thinkwill be my life starts todaySuddenly, at just sixteen years old, Amal’s bright future isupended: he is convicted of a crime he didn’t commit and sent toprison. Despair and rage almost sink him until he turns to therefuge of his words, his art. This never should have been hisstory. But can he change it? With spellbinding lyricism, award-winning author Ibi Zoboi andprison reform activist Yusef Salaam tell a moving and deeplyprofound story about how one boy is able to maintain his humanityand fight for the truth, in a system designed to strip him ofboth.