‘Love and Justice: A Story of Triumph on Two Different Courts’

By Stefanie Davis

“Love and Justice: A Story of Triumph on Two Different Courts” by Jonathan Irons and Maya Moore Irons is the perfect read for combining March’s basketball and women’s history themes. This is a story of injustice, triumph, love, and faith. Jonathan Irons grew up poor with his grandmother as a single parent, and eventually got into drugs. However, at just 16 he was arrested for a violent burglary and assault. Two years later he was tried as an adult, found guilty and sentenced to serve 65 years in prison. Jonathan met Maya through her godparents, who had connected with him through a prison ministry program. As Maya learned more about Jonathan and his case, she was convinced of his innocence and determined to help fight for his freedom. In 2019, Maya stepped away from her successful WNBA and overseas professional basketball career to focus on securing Jonathan’s freedom. It would take 23 years to overturn Jonathan’s conviction and set him free. Maya said, “I could never have believed that in the midst of a career where I wore the number 23, I would also be in the middle of this profound 23-year-long story of love and justice (Irons, p. 322).” You will be shocked by the details of his case, excited and hopeful for things to come, and cheering at the happy ending. The story is slow moving at times, but it is such an engaging and emotional read that it’s worth muddling through the slower parts. Readers may also enjoy “After Life: My Journey of Incarceration and Freedom” by Alice Marie Johnson, “When Truth Is All You Have: A Memoir of Faith, Justice, and Freedom for the Wrongly Convicted” by Jim McClosky, “Becoming Ms. Burton: From Prison to Recovery to Leading the Fight for Incarcerated Women” by Susan Burton and Carl Lynn, and “Divine Collison: An African Boy, An American Lawyer, and Their Remarkable Battle for Freedom” by Jim Gash.



“Hoosier Hysteria: A History of Indiana High School Basketball” by Herbert Frederick Schwomeyer

“Black Candle Women” by Diane Marie Brown

Lady Tan’s Circle of Women” by Lisa See

“All Good People Here” by Ashley Flowers

Young Adult:

“In Limbo: A Graphic Memoir” by Deb JJ Lee

“Music Mavens: 15 Women of Note in the Industry” by Ashley Walker

“Wrong Side of the Court” by H. N. Khan

“Girl Forgotten” by April Henry


“A Take-Charge Girl Blazes a Trail to Congress: The Story of Jeannette Rankin” by Gretchen Woelfle

“Fighting for Yes!: The Story of Disability Rights Activist Judith Heumann” by Maryann Cocca-Leffler

“Who is LeBron James?” by Crystal Hubbard

“Just Like Grandma” by Kim Rogers