Monday, July 16, 2012

Great Summer Reads for Kids Abound!

Queen of the Track:
Alice Coachman
Olympic High-Jump Champion
Written by Heather Lang and
Illustrated by Floyd Cooper
Named a Great Summer Read for Kids by People Magazine

The NCBLA congratulates our volunteer writer Heather Lang on the publication of her book Queen of the Track: Alice Coachman Olympic High-Jump Champion, now available in a library or bookstore near you!
In its annual list of summer reads for kids, People magazine  recommended Queen of the Track as one of four great books for kids. With the Olympics starting in less than two weeks, you will want to share this inspiring story with the young people in your life. 

Queen of the Track tells the story of Alice Coachman, an athlete who never took her eyes off the prize. When Alice Coachman was a girl, most white people wouldn't shake her hand. Yet when the King of England placed an Olympic medal around her neck, he extended his hand to Alice in congratulations. Standing on a podium in London's Wembley Stadium, Alice was a long way from the fields of Georgia where she ran barefoot as a child. With a record-breaking leap, she had become the first African-American woman to win an Olympic gold medal.
A portion of the author's royalties will be donated to the Alice Coachman Foundation, which helps deserving and proven amateur athletes reach their full potential. 

Author Heather Lang remembers winning a blue ribbon in the high jump in sixth grade, clearing the bar at 3½ feet and landing on a cushy blue mat. A former attorney, she now loves to write about people who fought for their dreams, usually without the benefits of a cushy mat. She lives in Lexington, Massachusetts. Visit her at And be sure to check out her articles "Presidents Are People Too!," "Lions and Tigers and Bears, Oh My! Wild Animals at the White House," and "From Peas to Paper to IPads: The Evolution of the Ballot in America"on the NCBLA's educational website

Illustrator Floyd Cooper had a short-lived track-and-field career as a junior-high school student in Tulsa, Oklahoma. He can still hear the voice of his coach yelling, “Go! Push! Push!” as he trained in the southern heat. Today he is the acclaimed illustrator of more than seventy-five books for children. He is the recipient of the 2009 Coretta Scott King Award for Illustration as well as three Coretta Scott King Honors, ten ALA Notables, and an NAACP Image Award, among others. He lives in Easton, Pennsylvania. Learn more about Floyd Cooper and his books on his website.

MORE Resources for GREAT Summer Reads for Kids!
 Happy Reading Adventures!