Wilma Unlimited: How Wilma Rudolph Became the World's Fastest Woman by Kathleen Krull
Krull, Kathleen. Wilma Unlimited: How Wilma Rudolph Became the World’s Fastest Woman. Illustrated by David Diaz. Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishers, 2000. 44 pages. pap. $7.00. ISBN 978-0-15- 202098-9.
Annotation: Despite contracting polio as a child and becoming partially paralyzed, Wilma persevered and became the first American woman to earn three gold medals in a single Olympics.
Summary: This book is a tribute to the amazing story of Wilma’s Rudolph’s life. Contracting polio by age five and not expected to walk, Wilma showed all around her how determined she was to walk again. By age twelve, she no longer needed leg braces and by age twenty she was competing in the 1960 Olympics in Rome. She became the first American woman to earn three gold medals in a single Olympics. With the power of family, God and a firm belief in herself, Wilma was able to prove that miracles can happen with individual effort.
Evaluation: The straight-forward text melds nicely with the watercolor and acrylic illustrations. The story of Wilma’s life is retold in a simple style that matches the cubist feel of the artwork. The book has a crisp and dynamic appeal due to the richly colored illustrations. Recommended for ages 5 to 12.
Genre / Subject: Juvenile Non-Fiction, Biography, African American, Sports, Persistence,Aspirations
Awards: 1997 Jane Addams Children’s Book Award, 1997 ALA Notable Children’s Book