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Lisa Wheeler By (author)
Barry Gott Illustrated by
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Lerner Publishing Group

Limited ***

11.0 X 9.3 in
32 pg

JUVENILE FICTION / Sports & Recreation / Basketball
JUVENILE FICTION / Animals / Dinosaurs & Prehistoric Creatures
JUVENILE FICTION / Stories in Verse (see also Poetry)


Junior Library Guild Selection — 2011 — Winner


When the carnivorous Meat face the herbivorous Grass Clippers, rims are sure to rattle! Ally-oops and rejections are the orders of the day as the dinos play a fast-paced full-court game. No one can establish a lead as the final seconds tick by. The fans are getting tense, and there's a championship on the line. Which dino will step up and take it to the hoop?

This exciting follow-up to Dino-Hockey, Dino-Soccer, and Dino-Baseball is sure to thrill dinosaur and sports lovers alike.


"Continuing their sports rivalry (Dino-Baseball, Dino-Hockey), the plant-eating dinosaurs and their carnivorous counterparts meet in a championship basketball game. Captured in the energetic illustrations are both teams' on-the-court mad skills, making it a tight match. Though the rhymes occasionally lumber, play-by-play commentary laced with basketball lingo will score points with fans of both basketball and dinosaurs." --The Horn Book GuideJournal

"The basketball game between the herbivores and the carnivores has attracted a huge crowd of dinosaurs at Mastadon Square Garden. The Grass Clippers are the first to score, the Meat the first to steal and block. The crowd cheers as the points increase. Triceratops scores an easy deuce for the Clippers, and Raptor scores for the Meat with a slam dunk. Teamwork is demonstrated with an 'alley-oop' by T. rex and Raptor and an assist by Apatosaurus. When Stego and Pterodactyl collide on the court, the Dodo referee blows his whistle to call a foul. During halftime, the players disappear off the page, but readers will be entertained by a show that features cheerleaders, mascots, and an Elvis impersonator. After halftime, Jobaria (who was on the bench) works hard to tie up the game. Both coed teams have talented players of all shapes and sizes. Rhyming couplets contain basketball terminology and a mention of the next book in this dinosaur-centric series, Dino-Football. Although there is a lot of action on the court, this game is easy to follow. Visible lines allow readers to see the path of the ball, and colored text helps to identify players and teams. The commentary is fast paced and exciting, the illustrations highlight basketball tradition and culture (cutting down the net, an audience showing team spirit), and the end is inspiring." --School Library JournalJournal

"The team that brought us Dino-Baseball, -Soccer and -Hockey (2010, 2009, 2007) this time delivers nothing but net. Once again divided by food preference, the Grassclippers take on the Meat, pitting some of the better-known dinosaurs against each other in a high-stakes game for the championship trophy. Wheeler's staccato rhyming verse mimics both the play-by-play announcement and the action of a basketball game, making readers feel a part of the excitement. 'Allo answers off the dribble. / Diplo takes it up the middle— / —T. rex charges from behind. / Steals the ball. It's Meaty time!' (Dino and team names are in bold and color-coded: red for carnivores, green for herbivores.) The off-court goings-on are just as accurately portrayed—cheerleaders, agitated coaches, famous spectators and some typical half-time events. Gott's vividly colored illustrations are filled with energy—almost like sitting courtside. And just as in real life, observers may lose track of who's who in the melee, especially if they are not up on their species. Gott does a very good job of matching his artwork to the text, making it relatively easy for those unfamiliar with basketball to guess what 'free throw,' 'dunk' and 'taking it to the hole' might mean. Still, this is not a basketball primer. Likely to be a slam dunk with both basketball and dinosaur fans...and football enthusiasts can look forward to the teams' next match." --Kirkus ReviewsJournal

"The fourth book in Wheeler and Gott's picture-book series that mashes up the athletic with the extinct brings readers courtside as the carnivorous Meat face off against the herbivorous Grassclippers. This duo has a good thing going, and they don't mess with their formula, offering the breathless rhymes, fouls and fast breaks, and down-to-the-final-second twists readers have come to expect ('Raptor takes an outside shot./ En fuego! Ouch! The Meat is hot!'). And as in the previous books, they use the final scene to tease the next installment: 'Tickets go on sale at noon—/ Dino-Football's coming soon!'" --Publishers WeeklyJournal

Author Bio

Lisa Wheeler is the award-winning author of the Dino-Sports and Dino-Holidays books. When she isn't running around the country visiting schools, standing at podiums, and eating airport snacks, she resides in Michigan.
Barry Gott lives in Ohio and has illustrated many children's books, including all of the Dino-Sports and Dino-Holidays books and What DO Teachers Do (After YOU Leave School)?