Little People, Big Dreams: Evonne Goolagong; Maria Isabel Sánchez Vegara, illustrated by Lisa Koesterke
The daughter of Wiradjuri people, Evonne Fay Goolagong was not privy to the same privileges as white people. As an Indigenous Australian she was not allowed to enjoy many things and that included tennis. That didn’t stop little Evonne though and with her old tennis ball and a homemade wooden ‘racquet’ her tennis journey began…
Evonne Goolagong’s story is one of overcoming adversity and triumphing when all of the odds are stacked against you. It is amazing that she achieved what she did, especially as there was a time when the closest she got to a tennis court was staring through a fence at the white children playing on the court. Luckily for Evonne and the world of sport, she was given access to the court, albeit after the other kids had gone home, and a tennis coach spotted her natural talent. She achieved many things on the tennis court and has proved to be an inspiration to others. Just as she was determined to make her childhood dreams come true, Evonne now provides support to young Indigenous athletes so they too can become the stars of the future.
Delightfully illustrated with bright and bold artwork and with a story told in short and simple sentences, this is an inspirational read for any young person with big dreams of being a sporting icon. At the back of the the book there is a short overview of her life which includes key facts and dates and a historical timeline featuring photographs.
The phrase inspire a generation is often banded around but it is very appropriate to attribute it to Evonne Goolagong. Essential reading for potential sporting stars of the future.
Recommended for 5+.