American gymnast Simone Biles wowed the world at the 2016 Rio Olympics by winning four gold medals. The first female gymnast to earn three consecutive all-around titles, Biles has been listed on TIME magazine's list of 100 Most Influential People, authored a book on her life, and won an ESPY award for best female athlete in 2017. Her determination carried her through an unstable home life as a young child to become someone who wants to inspire others to lead a healthy and happy lifestyle.
Trailblazing Xiuhtezcatl Martinez speaks and performs around the world to inspire and empower people to protect and preserve the environment. A leader of the youth-led climate change movement and an activist for Indigenous rights, the 15-year-old Aztec change-maker is a commanding example to all youth to get involved in social change. Using the powerful medium of music, Xiuhtezcatl inspires people around the world to be environmental stewards in order to secure a better future for today’s youth.
A competitive swimmer in Syria, Yusra Mardini never let go of her Olympic dream, even when civil war made it too difficult to train in her country. In 2016, she was allowed to compete in the Rio Olympics as part of a special team for refugees. This was only months after making a daring crossing of the Mediterranean Sea in a sinking boat that she helped tow to shore. Dozens of lives were saved on the voyage. Still training, Mardini also acts as a spokesperson and educator for the United Nations High Commission on Refugees.
American teenager Zuriel Oduwole tries to live by the quote: “If your dreams don’t scare you, then they’re not big enough.” A filmmaker, public speaker, and writer, Zuriel has interviewed dozens of world leaders and pushed them to promote the education of girls around the world. Founder of the Dream Up, Speak Up, Stand Up organization, Zuriel teaches citizen filmmaking to kids around the world, speaks out on gender equality at major world forums, and makes world leaders accountable for supporting girls’ education initiatives.
Throughout his life, basketball superstar Earvin “Magic” Johnson has met both challenges and opportunities with perseverance and leadership. Dubbed "Magic," Johnson blazed a spectacular career in basketball. His play with the Los Angeles Lakers as point guard alongside center Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, as well as his epic rivalry with the Boston Celtics’ forward Larry Bird, marked a legendary era in the NBA. In 1991, Magic announced he had tested positive for HIV, a virus that can lead to the life-threatening disease AIDS, and was retiring from basketball. Little was known then about HIV/AIDS and its prevention. His declaration shocked the public but succeeded in putting a familiar and much-admired face on a disease that was shrouded in fear and prejudice. Magic Johnson's legacy includes his inspirational work as an advocate for the prevention of HIV and the still-incurable disease AIDS through his own foundation, which provides programs for HIV/AIDS education and prevention, including testing and safe sex practices.
Perhaps no two people in history exemplify the spirit of invention better than brothers Orville and Wilbur Wright. Born in the Midwest in the late 1800s, Orville was exceptionally good at creating mechanical devices, and Wilbur had a genius for ideas. The turn of the 20th century came during an age of invention and technological development. Inspired by a fierce worldwide competition to be the first to invent a machine that could fly and be controlled by a pilot, the Wright brothers tested and refined several prototypes. At last, on December 17, 1903, near Kitty Hawk, North Carolina, they achieved their pioneering flight. The brothers went on to develop machines and controls that made possible powered, fixed-wing flights and laid the foundation for pilot-controlled aviation as we know it today. They also founded the Wright Company, which built airplanes for the rising new industry of commercial aviation. Had Wilbur not died at the early age of 45, who knows what else the innovative pair might have accomplished.
This exciting book follows the travels of Portuguese explorer and navigator Ferdinand Magellan who led an expedition to the Spice Islands that ended up circumnavigating the Earth. Historical information and high-interest fact boxes are presented in a tabloid-news style that guides readers through major voyages, explorations, and discoveries. Topics include what led Magellan to sail west on behalf of Spain, life on board ship, the first-ever exploration of the Pacific Ocean, the completion of the voyage after Magellan's death in battle, and Magellan's legacy.
Carrie Underwood is a country music singer and songwriter. This book details her life and quick rise to fame as a winner of the television competition American Idol. The hot, young star has won several music awards and has even broken her own Guinness World Record for having the most number one hits on the Billboard Hot Country Songs chart. More recently Carrie has branched out into acting, including roles in TV shows, movies, and a live Rodgers and Hammerstein theater production.
American champion downhill skier Lindsey Vonn has won four World Cup titles as well as gold and silver in the 2010 Olympics in Vancouver. This intriguing book follows Lindsey's life and career from the very beginning through a variety of sports-related injuries and ultimately to the fulfillment of her dream. After her Olympic win, Lindsey became a fan favorite, appearing on talk shows and signing a number of product endorsement contracts. All eyes are on Lindsey now as she trains for the 2014 Olympics in Sochi, Russia.
Sidney Crosby skated into the limelight from the very start of his hockey career. In only his second season playing in the NHL, Sid the Kid became the youngest player ever to get over 100 points in a season. This book follows his amazing life story, from boyhood games on the ponds of Nova Scotia to captain of the Pittsburgh Penguins and the Stanley Cup in 2008. Crosby remained a league leader until the 2010-2011 season when he suffered a concussiona head injury that still has consequences for him today.
Not many years ago, country music sensation Taylor Swift was singing karaoke and learning to play her first guitar. Today, the superstar singer and songwriter performs sold-out concerts around the world. Her albums sell millions of copies, she's won numerous music awards, and she's been on the cover of just about every popular magazine.
The Jonas Brothers - Kevin, Joe, and Nick - have brought boy bands back in style. The pop-rock group has sold more than eight million albums worldwide and toured the globe, playing sold-out shows and capturing the hearts of adoring fans. With their positive, uplifting songs and strong sense of family and their faith, they have also redefined what it means to be cool.
When Vanessa Hudgens stepped onto the stage to try out for a role in High School Musical, she was one of over six hundred hopefuls. At that time, she was not well known. But the producers were blown away by her audition, and she was chosen for a leading part. It was this role that put the young singer/actress on the path to superstardom. Hudgens has now starred in a number of movies, released several albums, and won awards for her work as both an actress and a singer.
Most people came to know Zac Efron as Troy Bolton, the star athlete with hidden musical talents in the High School Musical movies. Today, Efron's talents as an award-winning actor and singer are far from hidden from movie-goers and from his millions of adoring fans.
Contemporary R&B artist Beyoncé Knowles has always loved to sing and dance. Entering competitions as a young child, she burst into stardom as a member of Destiny's Child. This fascinating book takes a close-up look at Beyoncé's life and career including her mega success as a solo artist. Also an actress and a philanthropist, the story of this multi-talented performer has only just begun.
Growing up in a family of musicians, Bruno Mars started his music career performing at a young age in his hometown of Honolulu, Hawaii. After high school he moved to California and began producing music for other artists before embarking on his own solo career. This amazing book describes Bruno Mars' early life and how his debut album sent him to the top of the charts worldwide. With a wide range of musical influences, it's no surprise that this multi-talented singer won Best Male Pop Vocal Performance at the Grammys only a year later.
Carly Rae Jepsen grew up in Mission, British Columbia. After graduating from high school, Carly was a hopeful on the television competition Canadian Idol. She finished third, but her story didn't end there. This entertaining book describes how Carly persevered and released her first album independently, then became an international sensation through MySpace, Twitter, and YouTube - with a little help from Justin Bieber.
Robyn Rihanna Fenty came to the United States from Barbados at the age of 16. A year later she burst onto the music charts with her first album Music of the Sun. Rihanna hasn't looked back. With seven successful studio albums, all before the age of 25, she is one of the best-selling musical artists of all time. This fascinating book about Rihanna reveals the facts about the woman Time magazine listed as one of the most influential people of 2012. But success has not come without a price. She has had struggles in her personal life to overcome, much of it in the unforgiving glare of the spotlight.
Robert Pattinson became famous around the world for playing a dreamy vampire in the Twilight movies. The romantic fantasy films have rocketed the British actor to fame. Pattinson is more than just a bloodthirsty heartthrob with great hair, however. He has starred in several plays and films, is a talented musician, and has won awards for his acting - and even his kissing!
Talented actress and singer Selena Gomez has definite star quality. From her early start on Barney and Friends to her starring role on the hit TV show Wizards Of Waverly Place, Selena Gomez has millions of fans around the world. This entertaining biography highlights the life and accomplishments of the young star, including her childhood, her rise to fame, her work as a Unicef Ambassador, and her plans for the future.
Born in California, Shailene Woodley almost became an interior designer before landing a starring role in the TV series The Secret Life of the American Teenager. This book follows the intriguing story of her rise to fame, from her breakout movie role in The Descendants to her star-making role in The Fault in Our Stars to her superstar status today as Tris in the Divergent movies.
Shephen Farrelly is better known to fans of the WWE as Sheamus, a Celtic warrior who became the first Irish WWE champion. Born and raised in Ireland, Stephen grew up playing a lot of sports. His father was an amateur bodybuilder and he followed in his path. His career in professional wrestling, however, almost had an early finish when a neck injury sidelined him for two years. But he came roaring back and the rest is history. This interesting biography follows his career in the WWE, as well as his several acting roles. Fans will also get a glimpse into Stephen's years growing up, his rise to fame, and his plans for the future.
One of the greatest point guards in the game of basketball, Steve Nash beat the odds at six feet, three inches to excel in a sport dominated by six-foot, seven-inch players. Born in South Africa, Steve grew up in Canada and was drafted to play in the NBA in the United States. This interesting biography follows his career from the Phoenix Suns to the Dallas Mavericks, then back to Phoenix. Fans will also get a glimpse into Steve's years growing up and his selfless attitude both on and off the court, including his generous work with charities around the globe.
This exciting biography traces Taylor Lautner's astonishing rise to fame. Readers will learn about his childhood in Michigan, his passion for martial arts, and how his determination and drive have led him to superstar status! Full-color photographs, personal stories, and quotes from the actor himself, give fans the inside scoop on one of Hollywood's rising stars.
Justin Bieber went from runner up in a talent contest in his small hometown of Stratford, Ontario, to a worldwide teen superstar, thanks to the Internet site, YouTube. Growing up, his mother bought him different musical instruments but could not afford lessons too. So Justin taught himself how to play. When singers Usher and Justin Timberlake took an interest in him, "Bieber fever" took off! Now he has platinum albums and sells out stadiums, performing for tens of thousands of screaming fans at a time.