"A Paula Wiseman book.";Includes bibliographical references. Details the life and career of American sportswriter Mary Garber.
From the Publisher
'A heartfelt, informative, and thoroughly engaging picture book biography.' 'School Library Journal (starred review) From beloved author Sue Macy comes an illustrated biography of Mary Garber, one of the first female sports journalists in American history! Mary Garber was a pioneering sports journalist in a time where women were rarely a part of the newspaper business. Women weren't even allowed to sit in the press boxes at sporting events, so Mary was forced to sit with the coaches' wives. But that didn't stop her. In a time when African American sports were not routinely covered, Mary went to the games and wrote about them. Garber was a sportswriter for fifty-six years and was the first woman to receive the Associated Press Sports Editors' Red Smith Award, presented for major contributions in sports journalism. And now, every year the Association of Women in Sports Media presents the Mary Garber Pioneer Award in her honor to a role model for women in sports media.
Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers
February 16, 2016
1 volume (unpaged) : color illustrations ; 29 cm
Payne, C. F., illustrator.
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Reviews & Awards
- Booklist starred, 11/01/15
- Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books, 02/01/16
- Horn Book Guide, 10/01/16
- Horn Book Magazine, 01/01/16
- Kirkus Reviews, 12/01/15
- Publishers Weekly starred, 12/14/15
- School Library Connection, 05/01/16
- School Library Journal starred, 02/01/16
Booklist starred (November 1, 2015 (Vol. 112, No. 5))
Grades 2-4. As a child in the 1920s, Mary Garber played tackle football with the boys in her Winston-Salem neighborhood and learned to love the many sports she watched with her father. Later, determined to become a journalist, she reluctantly worked as a society reporter until, during WWII, she took over the sports desk, traditionally “a man’s job.” Jackie Robinson became a role model for the young woman, who endured her own discrimination at the ballparks: banned from press boxes and locker rooms, she was seated with the players’ wives. Garber earned a reputation for fairness, covering games at local black high schools, a departure from standard practice in the segregated South. She wrote her last article in 2002. In this well-researched picture-book biography, Macy introduces Garber as a person who followed her passion for sports, despite her mother’s disapproval, and did her job with purpose, integrity, and dignity. The narrative is swiftly paced, smoothly written, and filled with interesting details and quotes. Payne’s soft-focus mixed-media illustrations feature beautifully delineated period settings and a masterful use of composition for dramatic effect. Best of all, even in crowd scenes, people are portrayed with perception, individuality, and humanity—especially Garber. A lively, memorable biography for younger readers.
Read all 6 full-text reviews …
Horn Book Guide starred (Fall 2016)
Pioneering journalist Mary Garber "got her big break" during WWII, running the sports page while the (male) sportswriters were fighting in the war. For much of the next six decades, she worked in sports reporting, blazing trails for female journalists. Macy's succinct text is informative and engaging, her regard for her subject obvious. Payne's soft, sepia-toned mixed-media illustrations provide the perfect touch of nostalgia. Reading list, timeline, websites.
Horn Book Magazine (January/February, 2016)
"It seemed that Mary was born loving sports," writes Macy in this affectionate portrait of a pioneering journalist. Garber's father frequently took his three girls to sporting events, explaining the rules of the game ("He felt if you were a spectator, you ought to know what you were spectating") and fostering his middle daughter's interests in sports and reporting. As an eight-year-old growing up near Winston-Salem, North Carolina, Mary created her own family newspaper, the Garber News; later, fresh out of college, she landed a society reporter gig at a real paper, Winston-Salem's Twin City Sentinel. But it was during WWII that Garber "got her big break," running the sports page while the (male) sportswriters were fighting in the war. For much of the next six decades, she worked in sports reporting, blazing trails for female journalists. Macy's succinct text is informative and engaging, her regard for her subject obvious. Of Mary's toughness as a young girl Macy writes, "[She played tackle] football with the boys...over rough and rocky ground...and of course, she was the quarterback." Payne's soft, sepia-toned, mixed-media illustrations -- part Norman Rockwell, part caricature -- provide the perfect touch of nostalgia, playing with perspective to further develop character. Garber is placed next to much taller men to create a sense of her physical tininess, for example, or sometimes with her mouth and nose obstructed to highlight her too-big glasses and boyish haircut. An author's note, timeline, source notes, and "Resources for all ages" are appended. sam bloom
Kirkus Reviews (December 1, 2015)
Macy illuminates the pioneering sportswriter's 50-year career. One of three daughters, Garber was introduced to sports by her father. She quarterbacked football with boys, created a lively family newspaper instead of writing letters to relatives, and pursued newspaper work after college. A society reporter at Winston-Salem's Twin City Sentinel, Garber got a career break during World War II. With the male sportswriters gone, her editor assigned her the sports pages. Garber soon moved to sports for good, covering competitive contests from football to marbles. Macy's clear, anecdotal writing is backed with solid research and documented quotations. She highlights Garber's coverage of Jackie Robinson and demonstrates that Garber made inroads too, reporting on games at North Carolina's segregated African-American schools. She overcame her own discriminatory roadblocks as a woman barred from press boxes and locker rooms. Macy clearly connects Garber's determination, talent, and sense of fair play with deserved recognition: she garnered a host of awards and widespread admiration. Payne's otherwise handsome mixed-media illustrations present Garber in caricature--far more so than other figures. The artist disrespects Macy's respectful narrative, depicting the petite Garber as an unchangingly childish figure throughout, with owlish round glasses, outsize head and ears, and scrawny neck. A winning tribute to an important game-changer--with points off for its discordant pictorial representation. (author's note, acknowledgements, chronology, resources, sources, notes) (Picture book/biography. 5-9)
Publishers Weekly (December 14, 2015)
In the 1940s, Mary Garber entered the male-exclusive field of sports reporting, and Macy (Roller Derby Rivals) dives into describing the challenges she faced-such as her panic when reporting at a college football game and realizing there was no program to identify the players, or not being allowed to talk to the players in the locker rooms. After Jackie Robinson joined the Dodgers, Garber was moved both by Robinson's baseball prowess and "quiet dignity in the face of taunts and jeers." Payne's mixed-media artwork blends a soft, hazy quality with a hint of caricature, emphasizing Garber's diminutiveness, even as Macy makes clear the thoughtfulness, smarts, and determination she brought to her journalism. It's an entertaining and accessible portrait of a generous-minded writer and a reminder of the value of telling people's stories, whether pro player or soapbox racer. Ages 5-8. (Feb.) © Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.
School Library Journal (February 1, 2016)
Gr 2-4-A heartfelt, informative, and thoroughly engaging picture book biography about groundbreaking sports reporter Mary Garber (1916-2008). Garber became a sportswriter at a time when there were few women in the field, when women were not welcome in the press box, in the locker room, or on the sidelines. Her love of sports, her fierce determination, and her independent spirit gave her the tools she needed to succeed. She became known for reporting on teams and people who were out of the mainstream, athletes whom other sportswriters wouldn't even consider, such as African American individuals and college teams. Her admiration of Jackie Robinson inspired her to face her detractors with stoicism and grace and to go about doing the best job she could. In Macy's adept hands, Garber comes to life, from her childhood antics on the football field to her important work giving a fair shake to kids and athletes she thought deserved more attention. Payne's mixed-media art lends itself well to the topic. His paintings fill the pages with movement and humor, and the characters' expressions draw the eye and complement the tone of the narrative. Pair this entertaining biography with a few about other women journalists, such as Nellie Bly, for a more in-depth examination of an area that is often overlooked in children's literature. VERDICT An excellent and welcome addition to any elementary biography collection.-Jody Kopple, Shady Hill School, Cambridge, MA © Copyright 2016. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
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