Game Changers

The Story of Venus and Serena Williams

Game Changers

Illustrated by: James E. Ransome
For Ages: 4 - 8
“This lovingly crafted picture book biography centers on the incredible bond between Venus and Serena Williams…An important selection for biography and sports collections.” —School Library Journal (starred review)

“Will appeal to children and sports fans of all ages.” —Booklist (starred review)

“Wife-and-husband team Cline-Ransome and Ransome celebrate tennis superstars Venus and Serena Williams, focusing on their formative childhoods and the way their preparation and talent fundamentally changed the game.” —The Horn Book (starred review)

“Every page is splashed with vibrant color and eye-catching patterns, and the figures of the women themselves are full of energy, speed, and tension.” —Shelf Awareness (starred review)

“A beautifully composed biography of the Williams sisters, Serena and Venus…This is one biography that will struggle to stay on the shelf.” —School Library Connection

Venus and Serena Williams are two of the greatest tennis players of all time. Some say they’re two of the greatest athletes of all time. Before they were world famous, they were little girls with big dreams.

Venus and Serena Williams. Two peas in a pod. Best friends. Sisters.

Six days a week they awoke before the sun came up to practice their serves and returns, to learn to run faster and hit harder. They were unstoppable. At age fourteen, Venus played her first professional match. Three years later, it was Serena’s turn. It wasn’t easy. Some tennis fans cheered for these two fresh faces, while those who were unhappy to see two black girls competing in a nearly all-white sport booed and taunted them. But they didn’t let it stop them.

With vibrant mixed media art, nonfiction superstars Lesa Cline-Ransome and Coretta Scott King Honor winner James E. Ransome share the inspirational story of two tennis legends who were fierce competitors on the courts, but close sisters above all.
  • Simon & Schuster/Paula Wiseman Books | 
  • 48 pages | 
  • ISBN 9781481476843 | 
  • July 2018 | 
  • Grades P - 3 | 
  • Lexile ® 1030L
List Price $17.99 (price may vary by retailer)
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About the Author

Lesa Cline-Ransome
Photograph courtesy of author

Lesa Cline-Ransome

Lesa Cline-Ransome is the author of many books for children, including My Story, My Dance: Robert Battle & Journey to Alvin Ailey, which was an ALA Notable Book, an IRA Notable Book for a Global Society, and an NCTE Orbis Pictus Recommended title for Outstanding Nonfiction for Children; Satchel Paige, an ALA Notable Book and a Top 10 Sports Book for Youth; and Words Set Me Free: The Story of Young Frederick Douglass, which The New York Times Book Review called, “visceral, intimate, and plainly told, this story is sure to move young children, and also motivate them to read more.” Her books were all illustrated by her husband, James E. Ransome. A graduate of the Pratt Institute, she holds a master’s degree in early childhood and elementary education from NYU. She lives with her family in upstate New York. Visit her at LesaClineRansome.com.

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