Yankee Stadium, 1938, and the most important boxing match in history is about to take place as the son of a black sharecropper is about to stand in the ring against Hitler's master race.
Who is this man who is holding America's hopes in his hands? As he grew up he did not speak until he was six years old and when he did try to talk, he stammered and was ridiculed for his imperfection. Through it all he would look down at his huge hands and know they held his future.
He learned to box, became a gentleman, and now as the Nazis are filling the concentration camps in Europe, it will be Joe Louis who will step up before the 70,000 fans in the stadium and the hearts of all of America, to fight for his country and will be the hero so needed in these dark and difficult times.
The poetic, poignant, and powerful prose of Matt de la Pena packs a punch. He takes us back to this moment in history with an understanding of all of the human dimensions. I call this a Kapow book and the light and dark contrast of the illustrations of the master, Kadir Nelson, continue the sense that you are there and you are part of this experience with your own hope that Joe Louis will emerge victorious. Imagine the moment as the fight ends. Not all heroes wear tights and these are the best kind. Ages 6 and up 40 pages