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Polo Cowboy



by
G. Neri
illustrated by
Jesse Joshua Watson

Edition
Hardcover edition
Publisher
Candlewick
Imprint
Candlewick
ISBN
9781536207118
POTENTIALLY SENSITIVE AREAS
Crime: Drug Trafficking/Dealing , Crime: Gang/Organized Crime , Discrimination: Disability , Discrimination: Racial Insensitivity/Racism , Violence: Death , Language: Mild Language
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How does a Black kid from North Philly wind up playing polo? The much-anticipated sequel to Ghetto Cowboy, now a major motion picture starring Idris Elba and Stranger Things’s Caleb McLaughlin.

When Cole moves in with his dad, Harp, he thinks life will be sweet—just him and his horse, Boo, hanging out with Philadelphia’s urban cowboys. But when Harp says he has to get a job, Cole winds up as a stable hand for the polo team at George Washington Military Academy, where the players are rich, white, and stuck-up—all except Ruthie, the team’s first and only girl, who’s determined to show the others she can beat them at their own game. As Cole and Ruthie become friends—and maybe more—he starts imagining his future, maybe even at the academy. But between long workdays, arrogant polo players, and a cousin trying to pull Cole into his dangerous business, that future seems remote. Will Cole find the courage to stand and be seen in a world determined to keep him out? With striking illustrations by Jesse Joshua Watson, celebrated author G. Neri’s novel weaves themes of tenacity and community into a rousing sports story inspired by Philadelphia’s real-life urban cowboys and polo players.

Black-and-white illustrations were done in pencil, clear gesso, and acrylic on bristol board, processed digitally. 

POTENTIALLY SENSITIVE AREAS
Crime: Drug Trafficking/Dealing , Crime: Gang/Organized Crime , Discrimination: Disability , Discrimination: Racial Insensitivity/Racism , Violence: Death , Language: Mild Language

Details

Format

Print

Page Count

288

Trim Size

8 3/10" x 5 1/2"

Dewey

F

AR

4.1: points 7

Genre

Fic

Scholastic Reading Counts

0

JLG Release

Feb 2022

Book Genres

Realistic Fiction, Sports

Topics

Horses. Polo. Sports and recreation. Equestrians. Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Fathers and sons. Friendship. City and town life. African Americans. Conduct of life. 

Standard MARC Records

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Cover Art

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Praise & Reviews

School Library Journal

Gr 5 Up-When Cole, a young Black boy, chooses to keep living with his dad in Philadelphia, he thinks he has it made. He'll be an urban cowboy and spend all his time riding his beloved horse. But Cole's dad gets him a job at the nearby military academy, and Cole is suddenly working long hours for polo players there, who are rich, arrogant, and white. As his life becomes more tenuous and he notices the gaping differences between his community and the academy's, Cole wonders what his future holds and what power he could possibly have to change it. This is the much-anticipated sequel to 2013's Ghetto Cowboy, and while knowing Cole's backstory may enrich the experience, it isn't necessary to appreciate everything this book has to offer. Cole is at a turning point in his life, both old enough to make big decisions for himself and to learn that the consequences can alter his life. He struggles with a distant father, a cousin trying to pull him into a dangerous business, and racial disparity in his community. His voice shines through the entire time, allowing readers to empathize deeply with his journey. Polo may seem like a surprising choice, but the practices and matches are as nail-biting as any football game. VERDICT Polo and cowboys come together, with a main character who will leap off the page and into readers' hearts, in this moving story of growing up and grit.-Kristin Brynsvold, Tuckahoe Elem. Sch., Arlington, VA

Praise & Reviews

School Library Journal

Gr 5 Up-When Cole, a young Black boy, chooses to keep living with his dad in Philadelphia, he thinks he has it made. He'll be an urban cowboy and spend all his time riding his beloved horse. But Cole's dad gets him a job at the nearby military academy, and Cole is suddenly working long hours for polo players there, who are rich, arrogant, and white. As his life becomes more tenuous and he notices the gaping differences between his community and the academy's, Cole wonders what his future holds and what power he could possibly have to change it. This is the much-anticipated sequel to 2013's Ghetto Cowboy, and while knowing Cole's backstory may enrich the experience, it isn't necessary to appreciate everything this book has to offer. Cole is at a turning point in his life, both old enough to make big decisions for himself and to learn that the consequences can alter his life. He struggles with a distant father, a cousin trying to pull him into a dangerous business, and racial disparity in his community. His voice shines through the entire time, allowing readers to empathize deeply with his journey. Polo may seem like a surprising choice, but the practices and matches are as nail-biting as any football game. VERDICT Polo and cowboys come together, with a main character who will leap off the page and into readers' hearts, in this moving story of growing up and grit.-Kristin Brynsvold, Tuckahoe Elem. Sch., Arlington, VA

Grades 5-8
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Grades 5-8
High Interest Middle Plus
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