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Cross-X

The Amazing True Story of How the Most Unlikely Team from the Most Unlikely of Places Overcame Staggering Obstacles at Home and at School to Challenge the Debate Community on Race, Power, and Education

Joe Miller

Picador


A Chicago Tribune Best Book of the Year
 
By almost all measures, Kansas City's Central High School is just another failing inner-city school--with abysmal test scores, only one in three graduate. Cross-X is the riveting story of Central's championship debate team. As the students and their coach face formidable opponents from elite prep schools, they must also battle bureaucrats who seem maddeningly determined to hold them back, friends and family who are mired in poverty and drug addiction, and--perhaps most daunting--their own self-destructive choices. It is a gripping story about the essential nature of debate in any democratic society, and how through argument, retort, and wit, ideals survive even under the most difficult conditions.

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Cross-X
PART ONETHE CONSTRUCTIVESONEFIRST DAYJANE RINEHART began the best and worst year of her teaching career in a familiar pose: hands on hips, lips pinched in a downward twist, one eyebrow cocked above the other. Seven kids slumped at their desks and scowled back at her. She only knew one of them--Ebony Rose, a gangly sixteen-year-old with a ghetto accent so thick people often had to ask him to repeat himself three or four times before they could understand what he'd said. The rest were strangers who wound up in her beginning debate class because the new hires in the school's counseling
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REVIEWS

Praise for Cross-X

"Forget the nerdy reputation that debate has. Instead think of a scenario as exciting as a sports game with high stakes like triumphing over racism, bad politics, and abject poverty. . . . An important, thoughtful, and provocative look at race and class in America."--The Boston Globe
 
"[Joe Miller's] enthusiasm is infections and the plot creates the suspense of a good courtroom thriller."--Entertainment Weekly
 
"Miller's mesmerizing, vivid accounts of the debates will leave you crouched in your seat, holding your breath. . . . An incredibly powerful, daringly hopeful book."--Minneapolis Star-Tribune
 
"Irresistible."--Elle

Reviews from Goodreads

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR

  • Joe Miller

  • Joe Miller's writing has appeared in Popular Science, Vibe, and Poets & Writers Magazine. He lives in Kansas City, Missouri.
  • Joe Miller Michael McClure
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Available Formats and Book Details

Cross-X

The Amazing True Story of How the Most Unlikely Team from the Most Unlikely of Places Overcame Staggering Obstacles at Home and at School to Challenge the Debate Community on Race, Power, and Education

Joe Miller

BOOKS FOR COURSES AVAILABLE

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FROM THE PUBLISHER

Picador

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