A captivating sports memoir that puts social justice at the forefront.

ONE LIFE

YOUNG READERS EDITION

Soccer star Rapinoe commands attention both on and off the field.

In this memoir adapted for young readers, Rapinoe reflects on facing adversity and discovering what she’s made of over the course of her illustrious career. Rapinoe and her twin sister began playing soccer as children, joining a competitive boys’ team since there was no girls’ option in their small California town. Recognizing their potential, Rapinoe’s parents supported the girls through long drives, early mornings, and financial sacrifice. After the twins earned full soccer scholarships to the University of Portland, Rapinoe found new opportunities at the national and international levels and quickly made a name for herself. She discusses her growing understanding of her sexuality and racial politics and how this awareness led to her using her celebrity to champion causes from marriage equality to gender-based pay inequality in professional soccer. Rapinoe gained notoriety for kneeling during the national anthem, in alignment with her strong belief that White people have a responsibility to draw attention to systemic racism. Backlash against her activism has dogged her career, but Rapinoe challenges readers to use their voices to speak up for what they believe in, emphasizing that issues, just like people’s lives, are interconnected. Soccer fans will appreciate the game details and photos, from family snaps to moments from iconic matches. However, even the nonsporty will find much to appreciate in this inspiring and engagingly written book.

A captivating sports memoir that puts social justice at the forefront. (Nonfiction. 11-15)

Pub Date: Sept. 7, 2021

ISBN: 978-0-593-20341-5

Page Count: 272

Publisher: Razorbill/Penguin

Review Posted Online: July 27, 2021

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Aug. 15, 2021

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Macy wheels out another significant and seldom explored chapter in women’s history.

MOTOR GIRLS

HOW WOMEN TOOK THE WHEEL AND DROVE BOLDLY INTO THE TWENTIETH CENTURY

Well-documented proof that, when it came to early automobiles, it wasn’t just men who took the wheel.

Despite relentlessly flashy page design that is more distracting than otherwise and a faint typeface sure to induce eyestrain, this companion to Wheels of Change: How Women Rode the Bicycle to Freedom (2011) chronicles decided shifts in gender attitudes and expectations as it puts women (American women, mostly) behind the wheel in the first decades of the 20th century. Sidebar profiles and features, photos, advertisements, and clippings from contemporary magazines and newspapers festoon a revved-up narrative that is often set in angular blocks for added drama. Along with paying particular attention to women who went on the road to campaign for the vote and drove ambulances and other motor vehicles during World War I, Macy recounts notable speed and endurance races, and she introduces skilled drivers/mechanics such as Alice Ramsey and Joan Newton Cuneo. She also diversifies the predominantly white cast with nods to Madam C.J. Walker, her daughter, A’Lelia (both avid motorists), and the wartime Colored Women’s Motor Corps. An intro by Danica Patrick, checklists of “motoring milestones,” and an extended account of an 1895 race run and won by men do more for the page count than the overall story—but it’s nonetheless a story worth the telling.

Macy wheels out another significant and seldom explored chapter in women’s history. (index, statistics, source notes, annotated reading list) (Nonfiction. 11-14)

Pub Date: Feb. 1, 2017

ISBN: 978-1-4263-2697-4

Page Count: 96

Publisher: National Geographic

Review Posted Online: Nov. 23, 2016

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Dec. 1, 2016

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DANCING WHEELS

A stereotype about people with disabilities is shattered by this introduction to a dance company known as Dancing Wheels, a group composed of “sit down” and “stand-up” dancers. The story begins with Mary Fletcher-Verdi, born with spina bifida, a condition that causes weakness in the legs and spine. Mary always wanted to dance, and, encouraged by a family who focused on what she could do rather than what she couldn’t, she studied the art and eventually formed a mixed company, some who dance on their legs, and some who dance in wheelchairs. What she accomplished can be seen in this photo journal of the group’s dance workshop in which beginners and experienced dancers study and rehearse. Along the way, McMahon (One Belfast Boy, 1999, etc.) intersperses the history of the group, some details about the dancers, their families, and the rehearsal process that leads up to the final performance. Three children are featured, Jenny a wheelchair dancer, Devin, her stand-up partner, and Sabatino, the young son of Mary’s partner. The focus on these youngsters gives the reader a sense of their personalities and their lives with their families. Godt’s (Listen for the Bus, not reviewed, etc.) color photographs detail every aspect of the story and show the dancers at home and in rehearsal, interacting with each other, having fun, and finally performaning. They convey the dancer’s sense of joy as well as the commitment to the dance as an art form felt by the adult directors and teachers. An excellent book for helping children and adults expand their understanding about the abilities of the “disabled.” (Nonfiction. 7-12)

Pub Date: Sept. 1, 2000

ISBN: 0-395-88889-1

Page Count: 48

Publisher: Houghton Mifflin

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Sept. 1, 2000

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