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Find more Top 10 Sports Books for Youth
Trailblazing women fill this year’s list of top youth sports books. The titles below, all reviewed in Booklist over the past 12 months, show how athletics can provide a dynamic backdrop to diverse stories, both fictional and true to life.
Basketball Belles:How Two Teams and One Scrappy Player Put Women’s Hoops on the Map
. By Sue Macy. Illus. by Matt Collins. 2011. Holiday, $16.95 (9780823421633). Gr. 3–5.
The story of the first women to play in an all-female intercollegiate basketball game is made even more sprightly and immediate in Collins’ paintings.
Danica Patrick:Racing’s Trailblazer
. By Karen Sirvaitis. 2010. illus. Lerner/Twenty-First Century, lib. ed., $33.26 (9780761352228). Gr. 6–10.
Even readers who may not care (yet) about racing will be awed by Patrick’s story in this informative and eye-catching entry in the Lifeline Biographies series
Fearless:The Story of Racing Legend Louise Smith
. By Barb Rosenstock. Illus. by Scott Dawson. 2010. Dutton, $16.99 (9780525421733). Gr. 1–3.
Great for both racing enthusiasts and children seeking stories of groundbreaking women, this picture-book biography introduces an auto legend who never stopped driving (and crashing) from age 7 to 90.
Leverage. By Joshua C. Cohen. 2011. Dutton, $16.99 (9780525423065). Gr. 10–12.
What starts out as the football elite lording their invincibility over the men’s gymnastics team sharply escalates into a steroid- and violence-fueled grudge match in this powerhouse novel.
A Nation’s Hope:The Story of Boxing Legend Joe Louis
. By Matt de la Peña. Illus. by Kadir Nelson. 2011. Dial, $17.99 (9780803731677). Gr. 1–3.
In a perfect illustration of just how much a sport can enthrall the collective consciousness, de la Peña and Nelson team up to celebrate Joe Louis’ historic bout with the Nazi-backed Max Schmeling.
Payback Time. By Carl Deuker. 2010. Houghton, $16 (9780547279817). Gr. 7–10.
This page-turner combines a high-school football team’s drive toward the state championship with a school reporter’s investigation into an apparent ringer slipped in by the coach.
Score!The Action and Artistry of Hockey’s Magnificent Moment
. By Mark Stewart. 2010. illus. Millbrook, lib. ed., $29.27 (9780822587538). Gr. 5–8.
This chatty, photo-packed tour of ice-rink heroics is a gold mine for hockey fans as well as young skaters looking to perfect their own slap-shot techniques.
She Loved Baseball:The Effa Manley Story
. By Audrey Vernick. Illus. by Don Tate. 2010. Collins, $16.99 (9780061349201). Gr. 1–3.
With emphasis on Manley’s activist spirit, this biography covers the life of the founder of the Newark Eagles Negro League team and first woman to be inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame.
First-time author Gourlay slam-dunks this tale of a towering boy from the Philippines and the pint-size, basketball-crazy half sister with whom he has recently been reunited.
This engaging blend of research, quotes, and photographs looks at the profound ways that bicycles subverted traditional notions of femininity and had an emancipating impact on the life of late nineteenth-century women.
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