| From the Dust Jacket |
“Ali! Ali! Ali!”
So begins this celebration of Muhammad Ali, former heavyweight boxing champion of the world.
A true icon, Ali has influenced and inspired millions with his dazzling athletic ability, his undeniable charisma, and his incredible life story. A child named Cassius Clay, who dodged rocks; an Olympic gold-meal winner sometimes called “The Louisville Lip”; a member of the controversial Nation of Islam, who refused to be drafted into the military—Ali never quit, and he never stopped following his heart.
Tonya Bolden’s powerful words, reminiscent of Ali’s own well-known vocal stylings, are paired with R. Gregory Christie’s breathtaking paintings, done in acrylic with colored pencil. In their second collaboration, they offer a fitting tribute to the man known simply as “The Champ.”
“This is picture-book biography at its best.”
Bolden’s engaging text has a free-verse structure punctuated with enthusiastic exclamations that is enjoyable to read aloud. . . . Christie’s use of bold pinks and yellows, sketchy pencil lines, and dark strokes of paint illuminate the playful text and emphasize Ali’s exciting life and flamboyant personality.
—School Library Journal, starred review
“. . . an appealing introduction to a man who had good reason to say, “I’m the greatest.”
—The Horn Book Magazine
“The words interact well with Christie’s sturdy acrylic paintings so that, for instance, when we see Ali punching at the heavy bag, the text slants as the bag does, as if the words themselves are feeling Ali’s power.”
»» A Louisiana Young Readers’ Choice Award Honor Book
»» A Booklist Top 10 Youth Sports Book
Ages 6-up | 32 pages
Hardcover | Alfred A. Knopf | 2004 | ISBN: 0375824014
Paperback | Dragonfly Books | 2007 | ISBN: 9780440417828