Jimmy the Greatest!

Jimmy the Greatest!

Book - 2012
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Listed as one of the Best Children's Books of 2012 by Kirkus, honored with the Horn Book Fanfare, and selected for the School Library Journal's 100 Magnificent Children's Books of 2012

Jimmy lives in a small town by the sea where there is just one tiny gym. The owner of the gym suggests that Jimmy start training, and to inspire him, he gives Jimmy a box full of books, as well as newspaper clippings about Muhammad Ali - "The Greatest." Jimmy is swept with admiration for Ali. He begins to read and run and box like crazy, even though someone at the gym has taken his shoes. And as he does so, he makes a great discovery: you don't have to leave home to be "the greatest."

Unlike many stories about emigration, Jairo Buitrago's simple, profound text is about someone who decides to stay in his small remote town in Latin America. Combined with Rafael Yockteng's humorous illustrations, this book will be especially appealing to boys and boxing aficionados.

The Spanish edition, ¡Jimmy, el más grande!, was recently nominated for one of "Los mejores libros del año" (Best Books of the Year) by Venezuela's Banco del Libro.

Publisher: Toronto : Groundwood Books, 2012.
ISBN: 9781554981786
Characteristics: 1 volume (unpaged) : color illustrations ; 22 x 24 cm

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ChristchurchLib Nov 28, 2012

Originally published in Colombia, this "poignant, funny" and "bighearted" (Publishers Weekly) book tells the story of Jimmy, a boy who lives in a poor fishing village and is encouraged to take up boxing by Don Apolinar, the owner of the local gym. Inspired by Don Apolinar's old newspaper clippings about Muhammad Ali, Jimmy trains hard and does learn how to box...but he doesn't leave his hometown for the big city like Don Apolinar eventually does. With an unusual ending that affirms the importance of community, Jimmy the Greatest! is an unforgettable book that gets better with repeat readings

Picture books November 2012 newsletterhttp://www.nextreads.com/Display2.aspx?SID=5acc8fc1-4e91-4ebe-906d-f8fc5e82a8e0&N=574049

m
MB9
Aug 14, 2012

This is a beautifully illustrated, well-crafted book with an unusal, interesting, and touching story. I have no idea who the core audience would be for it- preteen boxing enthusiasts who like simple picture books? Highly recommended. Not sure to whom, but highly recommended.

ELIZABETH RAMSEY BIRD Apr 24, 2012

With a careful hand author/illustrator pair Jairo Buitrago and Rafael Yockteng have created a book that is an ode to the people who stay in small communities, helping and improving the daily lives of their friends and neighbors. This is a story that folks can relate to, no matter where they live. It’s a paean to the heroes of small town life. Unsung heroes, I have located your book.

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MB9
Aug 14, 2012

MB9 thinks this title is suitable for between the ages of 5 and 8

ELIZABETH RAMSEY BIRD Apr 24, 2012

ELIZABETH RAMSEY BIRD thinks this title is suitable for between the ages of 4 and 8

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ELIZABETH RAMSEY BIRD Apr 24, 2012

Jimmy’s fishing village is not particularly big or impressive since “there is usually only one small church and, if you’re lucky, a little gym where you can hit a punching bag, skip rope or box.” Boxing is precisely what Jimmy and all the other kids in the village spend a lot of their time doing, until one day Don Apolinar (who runs the gym) gives Jimmy a box containing books, magazines, and information about a guy named Muhammad Ali. Suddenly Jimmy starts using those glasses he never paid much attention to before and he’s reading everything he can get his hands on. In time, Don Apolinar leaves the village for the big city, but that’s okay. Jimmy stays behind, opening a little library and improving the boxing ring, and making the village a better place.

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ELIZABETH RAMSEY BIRD Apr 24, 2012

“I’m the champ. Only last week, I murdered a rock, injured a stone, hospitalized a brick, wrestled an alligator and got home in time to make lunch for Gramps.”

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