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Rucker Park Setup

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3.99  ·  Rating Details ·  512 Ratings  ·  109 Reviews
Rucker Parkaa place where basketballas greatest pro players go up against street legends. Best friends Mackey and J.R. have waited their whole lives to win the basketball tournament here. But when the day of an important game arrives, J.R. is fatally stabbed. While Mackey didnat wield the knife, he feels responsible. Now he has a score to settle, but the killer is watching ...more
Hardcover, 149 pages
Published September 1st 2008 by Perfection Learning (first published May 17th 2007)
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
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Kolby Brooks
Feb 11, 2016 Kolby Brooks rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
It was a good book overall. I like the story line because it was confusing to me. I also love this book because I like listening to basketball games too. If there was a series I would read it all
Jared Grilley
Mar 08, 2017 Jared Grilley rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This book was alright I liked the story line but i didnt like how it jumped around. This book was about this kid Mackey and his friend J.r. and how they are joining a teaming up in a tournament called the Rucker Park Tournament. One of the most famous street ball tournament in New York. J.r. gets murdered and Mackey play the games anyways but J.r.'s dad is the ref. His name is "Stove" well his nickname. Through out the book it skips back and forth, from the final game against fat Anthony's team. ...more
Kevin
May 11, 2010 Kevin rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
“Wow” is all I can say after reading Rucker Park Setup by Paul Volponi. This
book really deserves 5 stars out of 5, no doubt about it. Being a person who
doesn’t like reading, Paul Volponi delivers big, as a writer, with his second
based basketball story after Black and White, showing how one bet can really
f*** you up, as described by the main character Mackey.
Rucker Park Setup is a similar story to Black and White. In this book, there
are two best friends who refer themselves as “blood brothe
...more
Joshua Williams
Apr 01, 2014 Joshua Williams rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This book was fictional. Targeted to the sporty type kids, and those who like mystery of the sort. It was one of the best I've read. It had a great plot to it, and it just had great detail. The book keeps you guessing, and trying to figure out what will come next. Two boys are the best of friends. They love the game of basketball. There's hardly time when they're not playing. They both are getting ready for a big tournament, they have to win a few games to get into the tournament. When they fina ...more
Bryan Luna
Jun 02, 2010 Bryan Luna rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
The book Rucker Park Setup by Paul Volponi was one the best books I have read this year. It’s about two best friends named Mackey and J.R. Who are really good at playing basketball. Their goal is to win a tournament at Rucker Park. Where it turns out some of sport’s greatest ballers squared off against street legends. Both friends had to play a certain amount of basketball games and win them to go to the Rucker Park Tournament. Then later turns out that J.R. gets brutally stabbed on the day of a ...more
Matt Gumularz
Sep 04, 2014 Matt Gumularz rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This story "Rucker Park Setup" by Paul Volponi is about two best friends named Mackey and JR, and how one of them was murdered due to actions that had relations with the upcoming, big Rucker Park Tournament Championship Game. The story is in third person point of view, and told mostly during the championship game over at Rucker Park. This story taught me to always think before you act. You never know if your actions will lead back to people you care about or are close with. I highly recommend it ...more
Jiesen Zhang
Sep 02, 2014 Jiesen Zhang rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Paul Volponi's amazing mystery/sports literature involves two best friends J.R. and Mackey. Their love for basketball brings them to Rucker Park, a famous basketball court holding a tournament. Before they can get to the championship game, J.R. is fatally stabbed right in front of Mackey. Now he has to keep quiet lest he be murdered as well. Volponi's ability to blend two popular, but different, genres produces a masterpiece that constantly has the reader question who is the murderer? The ending ...more
James
Sep 23, 2016 James rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Ruker Park Setup takes place in New York. Two best friends playing basketball for a tournament in the most famous outdoor court in the country. But another rival team sets up a bribe for Mackey. And the head coach of his team is trying to figure out who took the bribe. This ends up killing his best friend JR. Now in his last game the book goes through every thought, flashback, and feelings of Mackey. Playing in the championship game at Rucker Park he is very angry and upset.
Henry Sandiford
The reason why I only gave this book 3 stars is because it disappointed me with tragic events that occured. What I like about it thoush was that it showed all the scams, money and competition that goes into competitive street basketball in New York City.
Connor Josephson
Oct 11, 2016 Connor Josephson rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The book I read was Rucker Park Setup by Paul Volponi. This book had a reading lexile level of 770. Paul Volponi usually writes books about sports and this is another one of his sport books. He has also wrote other books about basketball including the book, Final Four. Most of the books that Paul Volponi writes have main characters as teenagers. This book’s main characters, Mackey and J.R., are teenagers as well. In this book, Mackey’s betrayal leads to his J.R., his best friend's, death. They w ...more
Cameron Pasch
Jun 06, 2017 Cameron Pasch rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Rucker Park Setup by Paul Volponi is a really good book. The only thing I didn't like about the book is that it jumped around to much. I give it a 4 out of 5 stars. My favorite character in the book is Mackey because he is a really good basketball player. He isn't even a ball hog, like you would think if a person is a really good ball player you would think they were a ball hog but he wasn't. My favorite part in the book is when Mad Dog Dunks it off Mackey's alley when they are in the tournament ...more
Sebastian
May 29, 2017 Sebastian rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I think that this is a good book. The book is about a boy who enters a basketball tournament at Rucker Park. The boy's best friend is murdered and he saw who did it but is too afraid to tell anyone. The book almost entirly takes place during the final game and it gives you hints about who the murderer is.
Deja Ware
Mar 20, 2017 Deja Ware rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The whole book is surrounded by the setting of Rucker Park. The main character, Mackey, has flashbacks often throughout the book and that is the only time during the book that the setting changes. Mackey, an African American boy, is the main character in the book. The main qualities you see in the book are all bad. Like, his was dishonest throughout the whole book, he was disloyal to the one person he was suppose to have the most loyalty for, and if he wasn’t so deceitful the main conflict would ...more
Keshawn Christian
This is a great book. and i love how the author made J.R pass away in the middle of the book, so it makes it more interesting and it really make the people who is reading want to read more. But i hate how they put the end because it was so bogus how Mackey had a game and in the middle of the game when he was on the ground. he yelled out the killer and Stove the father of J.R just completely annihilated him. To me it could of be more thought through. but it still is a really great book and i reco ...more
Jr Wagner
Jan 17, 2013 Jr Wagner rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Rucker Park is an action filled mystery of basketball! It brings flash backs of memories and awesome imagery and feels like your actually there. It has suspense, mystery, action, and sports. If you are into any of those topics read this book. It makes you want to not put it down because of the mystery and action in it. Rucker Park Set up is a good book for a teen audience.
Rucker Park is all about Mackey and J.R. and their friendship. They are best friends who love and only care about basketball
...more
Alexa
May 06, 2014 Alexa rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The book that I read is “Rucker Park Setup” by Paul Volponi. The book mostly took place at the basketball court at Rucker Park but it also had some parts where it was in front of Mackey’s apartment building. The book was mostly about a big basketball tournament that was going on. But before the basketball game a guy name J.R got murder and the whole community is devastated by it. J.R was on the basketball team and was one of the best players. During the tournament the whole team played for J.R b ...more
Arminzerella
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Jordan Carter
Nov 16, 2016 Jordan Carter rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
In the book Rucker Park Setup, by Paul Volponi, the main characters names are Mackey and J.R. Mackey and J.R. are best friends that play basketball in this tournament at Rucker Park. They play on a team called the Greenbacks and J.R.'s dad, Stove is the ref for the tournament. The team makes it to the championship and just days before a tragedy strikes.

The main conflict in this book is that J.R. is killed right before the championship game to get the Greenbacks to lose the game. The hero in this
...more
05erikk
Rucker Park Setup has got to be the most complex and simple book that I have ever read. The story of it was basic enough to get me interested while the depth and moral choices that it displays kept me reading until the very end. Mackey has to make the hardest choices in a short amount of time all because his best friend was viciously murdered and only he knows the truth. The only bad thing that I can think of about the book was its simplicity at times. Also “hold the mustard” is the worst tag fo ...more
Jacob
May 29, 2015 Jacob rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Overall I thought the book was just alright. I liked some parts of the book and got very into the book, but at other parts I felt kind of sick of it. Mackey thought "Stove keeps waiting to hear something different out of my mouth"(Volponi 20). I really liked this part of the story. After I read about this and the murder, the book became a pager turner. I found myself just trying to figure out who killed J.R. Another part of the story I enjoyed was "I got to walk off this court with a straight fa ...more
Grace Quinn
Jan 17, 2013 Grace Quinn rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: english
Harlem’s Rucker Park average street basketball tournaments bring together street players and wannabes in a game of a lot of competitiveness. No one is supposed to die. This author shows the temptations of money and fame for young talented basketball players who compete in the park. Mackey and J.R. have been best friends since fifth grade, and they’ve become “dynamic duo” that can read each other completely on the court. J.R. who lived across the street from the park, is killed, but the tournamen ...more
Bryan Luna
Jun 03, 2010 Bryan Luna rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
The book Rucker Park Setup by Paul Volponi was one the best books I have read this year. It’s about two best friends named Mackey and J.R. Who are really good at playing basketball. Their goal is to win a tournament at Rucker Park. Where it turns out some of sport’s greatest ballers squared off against street legends. Both friends had to play a certain amount of basketball games and win them to go to the Rucker Park Tournament. Then later turns out that J.R. gets brutally stabbed on the day of a ...more
Jennifer Wardrip
Reviewed by Sally Kruger, aka "Readingjunky" for TeensReadToo.com

Basketball is life for Mackey and J.R. They've known each other forever and spend most of that time involved with basketball. Lucky for them, Rucker Park offers the cream-of-the-crop. The park has long been the scene of pick-up games and tournaments between actual pro-players and the best street players ever. Mackey and J.R. have long dreamed of playing in the annual tournament.

Unfortunately, Mackey gets involved in the "dark" sid
...more
Donte'
Oct 05, 2010 Donte' rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Rucker Park Setup is another one of my favorite basketball books. It has a tricky turning story with a weird moral but one that should be told. It stars two young basketball players with NBA hoop dreams. They decide to play in a Rucker Park tournament to help receive more scout attention. They played for the GreenBacks a local streetball team new too the tournament. Their team made it all the way to the tournament finals. However, one of the boys were killed during the tournament. There was a hu ...more
Batanai

I read Rucker Park Setup by Paul Volponi. It is about Mackey a 19 year old basketball player who is going through an emotional journey as he is dealing with the death of his best friend J.R the author displays Mackey’s emotions and feelings through one basketball game… The Finals of the Rucker Park Tournament, the tournament J.R. had been dreaming of winning his whole life.

One of the most interesting scenes of the book is the prologue in which the author makes a scene of J.R's death. It starts
...more
Claudia
When you open a book and read this as the first sentence, you know you're in for intensity: "A father shouldn't have to outlive his own son." This begins our roller coaster ride to the basketball courts at Rucker Park...where young men and old men, good men and evil men, play and bet and promote basketball.

Mackey and JR have been friends for as long as they can remember, and JR's father, Stove, watches over both. At the beginning of the book, tho, we learn JR's dead, a victim of a horrible murde
...more
Elijah Rowland
Mar 26, 2014 Elijah Rowland rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This book was very great and well written. I think everyone should read this book because it was amazing and very interesting. It really keeps you in suspense after Mackey's bet goes horribly wrong and his best friend, J.R., ends up getting killed. I recommend that everyone reads this book. It always keeps you wanting more and you'll never want to put the down book down. In addition there is a great plot in this story to go along with the different and varying personalities of characters. Also t ...more
Ibrahim
May 10, 2013 Ibrahim rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Barbara
Mar 17, 2008 Barbara rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites
Paul Volponi’s fast-paced and suspenseful novel draws the reader in from the first line with “A father shouldn’t have to outlive his own son. It’s not right.” Thus begins Mackey’s struggle with his best friend’s death on the eve of the big Rucker Park Basketball Tournament, the storied tournament played every summer in Harlem, and the role he may have played in it. J.R. and Mackey were both chosen to play for the Greenbacks, the team sponsored by J-Greene, a star rapper from the neighborhood. St ...more
Matt
Feb 20, 2013 Matt rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Baksetball brings betrayal and murder. Mackey and his best friend J.R. have adored the game of basketball all there lives, especially the Rucker Park tournament. They have always dreamed of playing in this legendary tournament and they now have that chance when they get recruted on a team. All goes well, untill J.R. is stabbed just before the championship game. And the only witness, is Mackey who conseals the truth in fear of the killer's rath. As Mackey plays in the championship game the truth ...more
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