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Ball Don't Lie

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3.87 of 5 stars 3.87  ·  rating details  ·  713 ratings  ·  186 reviews
Sticky is a beat-around-the-head foster kid with nowhere to call home but the street, and an outer shell so tough that no one will take him in. He started out life so far behind the pack that the finish line seems nearly unreachable. He’s a white boy living and playing in a world where he doesn’t seem to belong.

But Sticky can ball. And basketball might just be his ticket o
...more
Paperback, 280 pages
Published March 13th 2007 by Ember (first published September 27th 2005)
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 1,551)
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Sonya
I recommend Ball Don't Lie to anyone who loves basketball. They play a lot of basketball in the book. I don't like basketball very much, but I found the book interesting because the main character Sticky is interesting. His childhood was shaped by poverty, his unstable mother, and the many foster homes he lived in after his mother died. We see the effects of his childhood on the life he lives now as a teenager and the choices he makes, some of which are stupid. I found the plot difficult to foll ...more
Daouda Berete
Sticky the protagonist of the book Ball Don't Lie is a tall 6'3 basketball player. Untill he was six he lived with his mother that was a drug addict and would leave him on the street to beg for money and give it to her so she can buy her drugs. But its stoped when he started living with a foster parent and everything was going great untill she was diagnosed with cancer. After that he went to a foster home. He loved basketball but he had OCD that cause him to do actions over and over again untill ...more
Tyree
This book is about a few kids who know everything there is about basketball, the eduation, the history, and the fundamentals. These kids are doing porly in school. Throughtout this book, teachers teach the kids how to focus on school work as much as you focus on basketball.
I can connect to this book because the DEan in my school, he knows me very well and he knows that I play basketball and I do good in class. ANd he also knows that basketball gets caught up in class when it really dosen't nee
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Richie Partington
06 August 2005 BALL DON'T LIE by Matt de la Pena, Random House/Delacorte, September 2005, ISBN: 0-385-73232-5, Libr. ISBN: 0-385-90258-1

"Baby don't cry, you got to keep your head up
Even when the road is hard, never give up {you'll be alright}
Baby don't cry, you got to keep your head up
Even when the road is hard, never give up {baby don't cry}
Baby don't cry, you got to keep your head up
Even when the road is hard, never give up {baby baby baby}
Baby don't cry, you got to keep your head up {no}
Even
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Cassi aka Snow White Haggard
It's somewhere between 4-5 stars. Let's say 4.5 just to pick a number.

Everybody talks about looking for YA books that are boy friendly. People talk about it like it's a mythical creature. Well let me tell you I have found the magical leopluradon. Or I've found an excellent book for boys.

I love basketball. I read this book to compliment all my basketball watching during the month of March. I needed a book I could get excited about, something that could pull my attention away from the NCAA tourna
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Jaylan
Nov 07, 2014 Jaylan added it
Im not really a fan of reading but in this book Ball don't lie i felt a certain connection with the characters. This book was written by Matt de la Peña he’s accomplished something good with this book. Matt attended The University Of the Pacific where he got his BA, he also managed to get his MFA in writing.

This book has to be one of the most inspirational novel i have ever read, it had me on the edge the whole time. The book is about a white teenager who was raised on the streets and sadly that
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Jerod Sawyer

I just finished “Ball Don't Lie” by Matt de la Pena. Pena went to the university of the pacific which he received a basketball scholarship from. Pena has written four young adult books and one children's book, plus other short novels. Pena is now teaching creative writing at New York University.

In “Ball Don't Lie” Travis Reichard a.k.a Sticky is the main character. Sticky is 6’3 and very good at basketball. Sticky spends most of his days in the Lincoln Rec center where hen plays basketball with
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Daniel

Book Review: Ball don’t lie


Recently, I’ve just completed reading Ball don’t lie by Matt de la Pena. Pena lives in Brooklyn, NY teaching creative writing and visits high schools throughout the nation. Being that it was his debut novel, Ball don’t lie was made into a major motion picture in the fall of 2011 and was named as an ALA-YALSA Best Book for Young Adults.

The main character in Ball don’t lie, Sticky, is an ordinary foster kid with the biggest dreams of making it to the NBA one day. As a yo
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Christopher Slater
Ball Don't Lie by Matt de la Pena is realistic fiction novel about a white poor boy with little or nothing that trying make his dream of playing NBA come true. 17 year old Travis Reichard most referred to him as Sticky has been to 4 foster homes since his mom put him up for when he was 7. He and his girlfriend (Annie) are trying to go to the same college and accomplished their dreams together.

There are several things I like about this book. One thing I like about the book is that I can related t
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Antonio Morales
Ball Don't Lie by Matt De La Pena is about a 6'3 sophomore basketball player named Sticky. As a child Sticky had it rough. He lived with his mother who was a drug addict. She would even put him on the street to beg for change. Unfortunately she didn't use this money for food she just used it for more drugs. However all this stopped when Sticky went into foster care and found a new foster parent to actually take care of him. Unfortunately she ended up dying of cancer. When it all felt like it wo ...more
Jason Dair
Ball Don't Lie by Matt de la Peña is a sports novel about a boy who has nothing left in his life but basketball. He is bounced around from home to home. Sticky is a young boy who lives in a foster home and loves the sport of basketball and that's his only ticket out of his living position and struggle in life so he takes that as far as it will lead him.

There are a lot of things I liked about this book, such as the fact that the author made the gym that sticky plays in not have good lighting bu
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Jameel Ricketts
"Ball Don't Lie" By Matt De La Pena is probably The Best Sport Novel I Read in a long time. The novel tells a story about a foster kid named sticky , who has an amazing basketball game . Sticky takes through his life as a foster child and how basketball change his life . At first i didn't expected the book to be as good as i though it would be but after finish the novel my whole mind has changes .
There were many things i like about this book and one thing i liked was how the author showed us t
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Nate Shepard
Jo'nathan Shepard-Simpson

Ball don't lie is a book about sticky, a white boy from a foster center in the hood. He plays basketball at A Recreation Center In The Hood. Where many people come to watch, gamble, or test their skills against the greatest street ball players in the city. Some days you can get a game in and others you can't. So sticky gets there early and stands in the middle of the court practicing his game. Sticky has gone through some rough things in his life and still doesn't let th
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Reeseis Chillin
Ball Dont Lie by Matthew Quick is about a young basketball player named Sticky. Sticky bounces from one foster home to another as repeatedly as the dribbled basketball that is his talisman and ticket out of the ghetto. The boy suffers from obsessive-compulsive disorder that was spawned by a traumatic incident he witnessed as a seven-year-old: his birth mother's suicide when she slashed her wrists in their apartment's bathtub. Since then, Sticky has bottled up his feelings, except for his passion ...more
Lizzie
I read this book because I thought it would appeal to adolescent males that I teach, and in that regard it was an absolute winner. I would definitely want to purchase this for my classroom. As for me, I'm not a basketball fan, so at first I had some difficulty getting into the book. I just wanted to skip the chapters that had lengthy descriptions of basketball games, but I'm glad I stuck it out because as the novel progressed I became increasingly interested in the background story of Sticky and ...more
Jameer Killing
Ball Don’t Lie by Matt de la Pena is a realistic sports drama novel about a young teenager named Sticky who has to overcome obstacles in his life such as violence drugs, robbery, vandalism, sex, peer pressure and other things teens in today’s society must have to deal with. Sticky is also a foster child which also makes life much tougher and complicated on him. He isn’t known around Lincoln Park and isn’t looked as one of those important kids. Another thing that is also different about Sticky is ...more
Shane
The book I read, Ball Don't Lie is about a boy named Sticky who has a love for basketball. This book is a sports fiction book. He lives with his prostitute mother who also lives with his abusive boyfriend. Sticky is a young teenage kid who loves to play ball and wants to go to the NBA one day. Sticky lives in a bad neighborhood.

What I liked about this book is that it was on my favorite sport, basketball. I also liked the plot of the book, and how Sticky was dedicated to working hard. I like tha
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Matthew Butler
This book is a fiction sports book. The main character Sticky is a foster child who lives in a in a terrible neighborhood. All that he wants to do is play basketball and someday make it to the NBA. He usually stays in the local gym. When he is no there he might be out doing something that he should not be doing.
I really enjoyed the book on the other hand. I like how he had to overcome many problems in his life just like a real person. He also made mistakes in life just like any other person be
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Hayley Direda
CATEGORY: MATT DE LA PENA NOVEL

This story follows the adolescent life of a young boy nick-named Sticky. Sticky it's on the court with a basketball in his hands that Sticky learns a great deal about life and where he is able to escape from the horrors he faces as a teenager in the foster system. It's not just a story about basketball; it's a story about strength and family and self-discovery.

I really liked the way the story was told. It was similar to the form in which Whirligig was told, shiftin
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Wendee Vezzetti
SUMMARY:
Sticky is a foster care child who has a hard time finding his way through life. He has few skills and few connections. But one thing that keeps him going is his ability to play basketball. He develops a relationship with his girl friend, but yet continues on his path with petty crime (like shop lifting). After receiving a scholarship to go to a prestigious basketball camp, Sticky blows it by holding up somebody at an ATM to steal money to buy his pregnant girlfriend a birthday gift. Reta
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Ricky
Sticky is a poor kid, with a troubled life. Sticky is in foster care so he moved around from house to house in L.A and is occasionally homeless in between foster care homes. He spends most of his time at the nearest rec. center playing basketball. Setting Sticky has faced many challenges throughout his life including having a really bad case of OCD, living with his prostitute mother, moving around foster homes, and living on the streets because of bad placements in foster homes. Sticky finds the ...more
Nandy
To me, this book is kind of like an urban legend.
It seemed very different compared 2 any other books I've ever read.
I didn't exactly learn anything from this book other than how to use my grammar correctly.I enjoyed what the book was about but disliked the way it was written.I feel like the way he wrote the dialouge in the book was very superfulous.I guess his rationale was to be a different author in the way he wrote his book.
Eric Holmes
"Ball Don't Lie" by Michael de la Peña is a sport novel about a foster child, growing up playing basketball in California. The teenager name is Sticky and he has being going foster home to foster home trying to play basketball.

There were several things I liked about the book. The story is very vivid and really makes you picture the characters and the events happening. The book is very good and I felt like I was apart of the story. The things I didn't like about the book was the internal story ab
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Brian
While I enjoyed the craft that de la Pena employed in the structure of the book - using a series of flashbacks to fill in the history and details of the characters' lives - I was at the same time disappointed at some of the stylistic choices that he made. For instance, instead of having his characters speak using quotation marks, he chose to use italics instead. His use of Dante to speak "words of wisdom" to Sticky near the end of the book was a choice that I thought was poorly made, and the boo ...more
Ryan Davis
Ball Don't Lie was a lot bettert than I expected it to be. I didn't think the book would be as good as it is. The book is about Sticky a white foster boy who can play basketball. He is orginally from Virginia where he lived with his mom, but he moved to California after her death where he now lives in a foster home. Sticky is really good at basketball and the people who knows who he is knows this. Especially everyone at his local recreation center, Lincoln Rec. Despite the fact that Sticky is th ...more
Michael
Sticky the main character in the book who is a foster kid with no place to really call home for a steady amount of time, but out in the streets or at the the basketball courts. He doesn't really fit in with the rest of the boys or have the friends that support him through hard times. He makes it through life by stealing clothes and other things he can get his hands on. Most of his time is spent playing basketball because that is what he does the best. The lone white boy in a black hood playing ...more
Alpha
The book Ball Don't Lie by Matt de la Pena is about a boy named Sticky who is in love with basketball, he lived with a drug addict mom and her abusive boyfriend for 6 years. That all change when we found a foster parent, it was going so well. But then she got diagnosed with Cancer. Then Sticky had to live in a foster home, he still use to play basketball but it was with kids that was older and bigger. But that was no problem for Sticky he had skills like crazy. The awful part was that Sticky wa ...more
Roman Paniagua
This book is about a few kids who know everything there is about basketball, the education, the history, and the fundamentals. These kids are doing poorly in school. Throughout this book, teachers teach the kids how to focus on school work as much as you focus on basketball.

I can connect to this book because the Dean in my school, he knows me very well and he knows that I play basketball and I do good in class. And he also knows that basketball gets caught up in class when it really doesn't need
...more
Dominic Bright
Ball Don't Lie is a book by Matt de la Pena that's about a boy named sticky who loves to play basketball but also lives in a foster car pad. He also likes this girl named Anh-thu and they are madly in love. He also plays basketball at a rec center with some other ball players that are really good. And Sticky is just a normal person who wants to go to the NBA.
There are two reasons why I like this book one it talks about more than just basketball like his life and things that have happened in th
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Yolaina=YOLi
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Matt de la Peña is the author of five critically-acclaimed young adult novels—Ball Don't Lie, Mexican WhiteBoy, We Were Here, I Will Save You and The Living—as well as the award-winning picture book A Nation’s Hope: The story of Boxing Legend Joe Louis. Matt received his MFA in creative writing from San Diego State University and his BA from the University of the Pacific, where he attended school ...more
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