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May 2019 Juvenile Fiction

Kick It, Mo!
By (author): David A. Adler By (author): Sam Ricks
9780425289839 Paperback, Trade English Juvenile: Age (years) from 6 - 7, Grade (US) from 1 - 2 JUVENILE FICTION / Readers / Beginner May 07, 2019
$6.99 CAD
Active 6 x 9 x 0.18 in 32 pages Grosset & Dunlap Penguin Young Readers
Soccer is the next sport Mo tries to tackle in this fourth title of the perenially popular, Geisel Award-winning Level 2 reader series!

Soccer season is starting, and Mo has been working hard on his kicking skills so he can help his team, the Billy Goats, score a goal. But when he gets on the field on game day, it seems like all he gets to do is run back and forth. Will Mo ever get the chance to show his team what he can do?

Series Overview: Don’t Throw It To Mo! (football): HC 5/2015, PB 5/2016; Get a Hit, Mo! (baseball): HC 2/2016, PB 2/2017; Pass the Ball, Mo! (basketball): HC 1/2018, PB 1/2019; Kick It, Mo! (soccer): HC 9/2018, PB 9/2019.

GROWING SOCCER FANDOM—Last spring, the Huffington Post reported that MLS has become more popular than MLB among young sports fans, and that its popularity will continue to rise. With around 3 million kids participating in Youth Soccer Leagues, soccer is the perfect next sport for Mo and his readers.

THEODOR SEUSS GEISEL AWARD-WINNING SERIES—Don’t Throw It to Mo! won the Geisel Award in 2016!

BACKSTORY—David was inspired to write about a little boy who loves sports in spite of not being a star athlete by his grandson, who has cerebral palsy and is a giant sports fan.

BY POPULAR DEMAND—The Young Cam Jansen and Bones series have been popular for years with teachers, parents, and kids at the transitional reader level (Level 3). David has often been asked to write a series for earlier readers. The Mo Jackson series is his first-ever Level 2 series for progressing readers who are not yet ready for chapters or multisyllabic words.

FILLING A NEED—Troubled by press coverage about the lack of diversity in children’s literature, David was motivated to create an African American main character for beginning readers.

ADORABLE ART—Up-and-comer Sam Ricks has a dynamic, Nickelodeon-inspired style that is sure to catch kids’ eyes and make them fall in love with Mo.

David A. Adler is the author of more than two hundred children’s books, including two Level 3 easy-to-read series Young Cam Jansen and Bones. Visit David at

Author Residence: Woodmere, New York

Sam Ricks is a children's books illustrator and lead graphic design faculty at The Art Institute of Salt Lake City. Visit him at

Illustrator Residence: Salt Lake City, Utah

Praise for Kick It, Mo!:

“Another winning title in the popular series.”—School Library Journal

“Simple in its storytelling, strong in its diversity, this is an entertaining as well as enlightening read.”—Kirkus Reviews

“The youngest, smallest kid on each team, Mo works hard to learn and improve his skills. Who could begrudge this unlikely sports hero the good luck that comes his way in each book? Not a kid who’s working hard to master a similarlycomplex, difficult challenge: learning to read.”—Booklist

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