Solo (Paperback)

Solo By Kwame Alexander, Mary Rand Hess Cover Image
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Solo by Kwame Alexander and Mary Rand Hess is a New York Times bestseller! Kirkus Reviews said Solo is, “A contemporary hero’s journey, brilliantly told.” Through the story of a young Black man searching for answers about his life, Solo empowers, engages, and encourages teenagers to move from heartache to healing, burden to blessings, depression to deliverance, and trials to triumphs.

Blade never asked for a life of the rich and famous. In fact, he’d give anything not to be the son of Rutherford Morrison, a washed-up rock star and drug addict with delusions of a comeback. Or to no longer be part of a family known most for lost potential, failure, and tragedy, including the loss of his mother. The one true light is his girlfriend, Chapel, but her parents have forbidden their relationship, assuming Blade will become just like his father.

In reality, the only thing Blade and Rutherford have in common is the music that lives inside them. And songwriting is all Blade has left after Rutherford, while drunk, crashes his high school graduation speech and effectively rips Chapel away forever. But when a long-held family secret comes to light, the music disappears. In its place is a letter, one that could bring Blade the freedom and love he’s been searching for, or leave him feeling even more adrift.


  • Is written by New York Times bestselling author and Newbery Medal and Coretta Scott King Book Award-winner Kwame Alexander
  • Showcases Kwame’s signature intricacy, intimacy, and poetic style, by exploring what it means to finally go home
  • An #OwnVoices novel that features a BIPOC protagonist on a search for his roots and identity
  • Received great reviews from Publishers Weekly, School Library Journal, Booklist, and Kirkus.

If you enjoy Solo, check out Swing by Kwame Alexander and Mary Rand Hess.

About the Author

Kwame Alexander is the New York Times bestselling author of thirty-two books, including The Undefeated; How to Read a Book; How to Write a Poem; Solo; Swing; Rebound, which was shortlisted for the prestigious Carnegie Medal; and his Newbery Medal–winning middle grade novel The Crossover. He’s also the founding editor of Versify, an imprint that aims to Change the World One Word at a Time. Visit him at kwamealexander.com

Mary Rand Hess is a poet, playwright, screenwriter, composer, mixed-media artist, and New York Times bestselling author of notable and award-winning books. Some of her picture books include The One and Only Wolfgang: From Pet Rescue to One Big Happy Family; Animal Ark: Celebrating Our Wild World in Poetry and Pictures; and Belong, a book near and dear to her heart. Whether she’s creating for the page, stage, or screen, Mary has many stories and poems to dream up and share.

Praise For…

A rhythmic, impassioned ode to family, identity, and the history of rock and roll. — Booklist (starred review)

A contemporary hero’s journey, brilliantly told. — Kirkus Reviews (starred review)

Product Details
ISBN: 9780310761884
ISBN-10: 0310761883
Publisher: Clarion Books
Publication Date: July 23rd, 2019
Language: English