Advocate staff photo by BILL FEIG -- Kwame Alexander, a Newbery Medal recipient, speaks to Episcopal School students in grades 6-8. The Newbery Medal was named for eighteenth-century British bookseller John Newbery. It is awarded annually by the Association for Library Service to Children, a division of the American Library Association, to the author of the most distinguished contribution to American literature for children. "The Crossover", written by Kwame Alexander and published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt received the medal in 2015. In the book, twelve-year-old narrator, Josh Bell, uses the rhythms of a poetry jam to emulate the "moving & grooving/popping and rocking" of life on the basketball court with his twin brother, J.B. This powerful novel in verse paints an authentic portrait of a closely-knit family on the brink of crisis. Many 6th graders studied The Crossover, the novel he wrote that earned the Newbery. ItÕs also been a big hit with sports-minded kids in other grades. HeÕs a celebrated author with over 20 books to his credit, mostly written as poetry.