Little Shaq Takes a Chance

Little Shaq Takes a Chance
Co-Authors / Illustrators
Age Range
Release Date
April 26, 2016
Buy This Book
This new story in the exciting series created by Shaquille O'Neal and illustrated by Coretta Scott King/John Steptoe New Talent award winner Theodore Taylor III, encourages kids to find their own true talents.

Like most kids, Little Shaq doesn't love trying new things, especially if he might not be very good at them. So when his class is assigned projects for the school's upcoming art show, he's not sure that his skills will transfer from the basketball court to the art studio. Rosa Lindy and Barry have their projects all figured out. Can Little Shaq find the confidence to embrace his own style and create a piece for the show?

Continuing this series that celebrates community, family, and education, Little Shaq Takes a Chance will inspire readers the to be brave, have fun, and love reading!

Editor review

1 review
Basketball and Life Lessons
Overall rating
Plot/Characters/Writing Style
Illustrations/Photos (if applicable)
Little Shaq is not at all excited about the upcoming school art fair because he doesn't feel that he is good at anything artistic. His cousin Barry doesn't help, but his friend Rosa suggests that he try lots of things before giving up. It's not just art that makes Shaq frustrated-- he is also leery of trying new foods like sushi as well. Once he tries several forms of art, and is frustrated by each one of them, he finally tries sculpting. He likes it, and is able to complete his project in time for the art show. He also decides to stop being stubborn and to try sushi as well.
Good Points
This is a short book (64 pages) that is set up like an I Can Read book. There are no more than about five sentences on each page, and the illustrations by Theodore Taylor III are plentiful. These are two crucial elements for readers who are either beginning to read or are struggling with it. These readers like to be able to turn pages quickly and finish books, and the pictures provide clues to the content.

While the reluctance to try something new is a topic that will resonate best with younger readers, the bright covers have cartoon style pictures that make them look solidly middle grade. Older readers can carry them around without being embarrassed.

I wish that there were a little more basketball in this story, but young readers of any age interested in basketball will find Shaq's story of trying new things to be amusing as well as informative.
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