Thursday, February 16, 2017

Good Quick Reads About Sports

Hey there, guys and sports fans everywhere, this is Iron Guy Carl with a bunch of good books that are fun, interesting (even informative) and don't take very long to finish. I call books like that Good Quick Reads.
Ever since our good friend Ms. Yingling challenged book bloggers to talk more about sports books, the Iron Guy decided to take her up on that challenge. In fact, he even made it a New Year's resolution. So here are my first offerings for 2017:

Free Throw by Jake Maddox--Last year Jason was the tallest kid on the Hampton Hornets and was the star player. But this year, Derek grew five inches and is now the tallest. Coach gives him the center position but now, when Derek has open shots, Jason won't pass the ball to him. And now Derek can't hit his free throws and Jason keeps reminding him about it. Could the team win with all this going on?

Who Is Wayne Gretzky? by Gail Herman, illustrated by Ted Hammond

All guys seem to love the Who Was... or Who Is... series of biographies. And there's a good reason! They are always interesting, always quick to read and always have stories that really draw you in. And they often talk about amazing people. Like Wayne Gretzky. He was a truly incredible athlete, setting unbelievable records. Find out how young he was when he first started skating, why he was called "The Great One," and why he gave the Stanley Cup trophy to another player in 1987.

Who Is Muhammed Ali? by James Buckley, Jr. and illustrated by Stephen Marchesi

Everyone knows about the man who could "Float like a butterfly, sting like a bee." He lived an epic life, achieving victories no one thought possible, losing it all when he refused to sign up for the Vietnam War and making comeback after comeback. It's a great story and, even if you think you know a lot about him, like the Iron Guy who lived through that whole era, you'll still find out things you never knew! (PS--this book came out in 2014 and Ali has died since then. The book cover you see has been updated in the library's system)

Mickey Mantle: The Commerce Comet by Jonah Winter, illustrated by C. F. Payne

This is an extremely short biography (I read it in about 15 minutes) but, wow, what an impact it had on me! Mickey Mantle set records that have not been broken to this day! But he didn't start out with many advantages--in fact, his home was a "tiny shack with ten people, three beds and no indoor plumbing." Yet he was asked to join the New York Yankees, the greatest team of that time, when he was 16! He was too young, of course, but joined when he was old enough--then an accident happened that affected him for life. What was it? Oh, man, you've got to read this story to find out!

Boys, if you want to read some terrific stories, here they are. Grownups, if you're looking for books for boys who say they don't like to read, hand them one of these. I guarantee you, you will not be disappointed!


Ms. Yingling said...

Hooray! Go sports! Do the thing! Win the points! You might pick up some Fred Bowen, too, since they are shortish. I still don't believe librarians who say their readers don't read sports books,

Iron Guy Carl said...

I agree! Maybe the librarians don't read sports books but the kids do!

Greg Pattridge said...

Great list. I've bookmarked it and will share it with teachers and librarians.

Joanne Roberts said...

My son loves the "Who was" series and I read a book full of fascinating information about Stan Musiel a few months ago. Thanks for the heads up.

Iron Guy Carl said...

Thanks, everybody, and I'm honored that you'll share my list. Sports biographies feature really remarkable people. And I haven't met a kid yet who doesn't like the Who Was.. books--or the "Big Head Books," as I heard one person call them.