Macy, S., & Collins, M. (ill.) (2011). Basketball Belles: how two teams and one scrappy player put women’s hoops on the map. New York: Holiday House. ISBN: 9780823421633
Annotation: During the first women’s collegiate basketball game, Agnes Morley, a guard for Stanford, must prevent University of California, Berekley forwards from scoring, and hopefully, she’ll help her team to victory.
Reaction: This was an interesting read for me. I’ve been reading so many biographies recently, and I was sort of expecting this to be another one of those. Really, though, this book is more a biography of women’s basketball, told from the perspective of one of the players from the first women’s college basketball game. I like the way Macy frames the story; it’s different from most of other books I’ve read, and I think her use of the present tense to describe the game allows the reader to feel the same suspense and anxiety of the players.
The illustrations were created with a computer program, but they look like the could pass for oil paintings. They’re very realistic and detailed. I enjoy seeing the period dress, especially the basketball uniforms, but I think the scene with the janitor adjusting the hoop is my favorite. I love the expression on the men’s faces as they take in the vision of so many women playing and enjoying such a physical sport.
I would recommend this for 5th and 6th grade boys and girls who love sports, especially basketball. Also, I could see this working as part of a school project about the history of basketball and/or women’s professional sports.
Media Used: Corel Painter