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About Kareem Abdul-Jabbar
Kareem Abdul-Jabbar is a huge Holmesian--7'2" tall, basketball's all-time leading scorer, and recipient of the Presidential Medal of Freedom (our nation's highest civilian honor) which was awarded from President Obama. He writes extensively, for The Hollywood Reporter & The Guardian Newspaper and has published 15 books; Giant Steps (biography), Kareem (last year in NBA), What Color is My World (children's), Profiles in Black Courage, Brothers in Arms (military history), On the Shoulders of Giants (black history), Coach Wooden & Me (our 50-year friendship and Becoming Kareem On and Off the Court (YA). His first novel Mycroft Holmes, starring Sherlock Holmes lesser well known but far more talented older brother, was published in 2015. The Mycroft trilogy is now complete and available online.
For more information visit: KareemAbdulJabbar.com
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Kareem Abdul-Jabbar’s deeply personal essay explores racial conflict through the prism of his childhood and the influence of his father, a police officer who walked the beat between two worlds.
Growing up in New York City in the 1950s and 1960s, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar listened to jazz, watched Jackie Robinson at Ebbets Field, and saw a Black pop-culture icon in a TV western. It kick-started Kareem’s interest in a rich history erased by white educators. It also sparked his activism. During these years, as Kareem struggled with racism, visibility, and justice, his father’s presence loomed large with purpose. He was a Black cop weathering a complicated conflict of loyalties during the most tumultuous civil rights upheaval the country had ever been through. Now, at a time when his powerful voice is needed the most, Kareem shares his unique perspective from the front lines of sixty years of social change, not just as an activist, but as a son, an athlete, a writer, and a Black man in America.
Fresh out of Cambridge University, the young Mycroft Holmes is already making a name for himself in government, working for the Secretary of State for War. Yet this most British of civil servants has strong ties to the faraway island of Trinidad, the birthplace of his best friend, Cyrus Douglas, a man of African descent, and where his fiancée Georgiana Sutton was raised.
Mycroft’s comfortable existence is overturned when Douglas receives troubling reports from home. There are rumors of mysterious disappearances, strange footprints in the sand, and spirits enticing children to their deaths, their bodies found drained of blood. Upon hearing the news, Georgiana abruptly departs for Trinidad. Near panic, Mycroft convinces Douglas that they should follow her, drawing the two men into a web of dark secrets that grows more treacherous with each step they take...
Written by NBA superstar Kareem Abdul- Jabbar and screenwriter Anna Waterhouse, Mycroft Holmes reveals the untold story of Sherlock’s older brother. This harrowing adventure changed his life, and set the stage for the man Mycroft would become: founder of the famous Diogenes Club and the hidden power behind the British government.
It is 1872, and a series of gruesome murders is the talk of London. Mycroft Holmes--now twenty-six and a force to be reckoned with at the War Office--has no interest in the killings; however his brother Sherlock has developed a distasteful fascination for the macabre to the detriment of his studies, much to Mycroft's frustration.
When a ship carrying cargo belonging to Mycroft's best friend Cyrus Douglas runs aground, Mycroft persuades Sherlock to serve as a tutor at the orphanage that Douglas runs as a charity, so that Douglas might travel to see what can be salvaged. Sherlock finds himself at home among the street urchins, and when a boy dies of a suspected drug overdose, he decides to investigate, following a trail of strange subterranean symbols to the squalid opium dens of the London docks. Meanwhile a meeting with a beautiful Chinese woman leads Mycroft to the very same mystery, one that forces him to examine the underbelly of the opium trade that is enriching his beloved Britain's coffers.
As the stakes rise, the brothers find that they need one another's assistance and counsel. But a lifetime of keeping secrets from each other may have catastrophic consequences...
It is 1873, and as the economies of Europe threaten to crumble, Mycroft Holmes finds himself in service to the Crown once again. A distant relative of Queen Victoria has been slain by the Fire Four Eleven killer, a serial murderer who leaves no mark upon his victims, only a mysterious calling card. Meanwhile, Sherlock has already taken it upon himself to solve the case, as his interest in the criminal mind grows into an obsession.
Mycroft begrudgingly allows Sherlock to investigate, as Ai Lin--the woman he is still in love with--needs his aid. Her fiancé has been kidnapped, and the only man who might know his fate is a ruthless arms dealer with a reputation for killing those who cross him. Mycroft persuades his friend Cyrus Douglas to help find the young man, but Douglas himself is put in harm's way.
As Sherlock travels the country on the hunt for the Fire Four Eleven murderer, both he and Mycroft will discover that the greed of others is at the root of the evil they are trying to unearth...
When future NBA legend Kareem Abdul-Jabbar was still an 18-year-old high school basketball prospect from New York City named Lew Alcindor, he accepted a scholarship from UCLA largely on the strength of Coach John Wooden's reputation as a winner. It turned out to be the right choice, as Alcindor and his teammates won an unprecedented three NCAA championship titles. But it also marked the beginning of one of the most extraordinary and enduring friendships in the history of sports. In Coach Wooden and Me, Abdul-Jabbar reveals the inspirational story of how his bond with John Wooden evolved from a history-making coach-player mentorship into a deep and genuine friendship that transcended sports, shaped the course of both men's lives, and lasted for half a century.
Coach Wooden and Me is a stirring tribute to the subtle but profound influence that Wooden had on Kareem as a player, and then as a person, as they began to share their cultural, religious, and family values while facing some of life's biggest obstacles. From his first day of practice, when the players were taught the importance of putting on their athletic socks properly; to gradually absorbing the sublime wisdom of Coach Wooden's now famous "Pyramid of Success"; to learning to cope with the ugly racism that confronted black athletes during the turbulent Civil Rights era as well as losing loved ones, Abdul-Jabbar fondly recalls how Coach Wooden's fatherly guidance not only paved the way for his unmatched professional success but also made possible a lifetime of personal fulfillment.
Full of intimate, never-before-published details and delivered with the warmth and erudition of a grateful student who has learned his lessons well, Coach Wooden and Me is at once a celebration of the unique philosophical outlook of college basketball's most storied coach and a moving testament to the all-conquering power of friendship.
Instant New York Times and USA Today Bestseller
President Barack Obama's Favorite Book of 2017
A Boston Globe and Huffington Post Best Book of 2017 Pick
A powerful wartime saga recounting the extraordinary story of the 761st Tank Battalion, the first all-black armored unit to see combat in World War II.
“More than a combat story . . . it’s also the story of how black soldiers had to fight (literally and figuratively) for the right to fight the Germans.”—USA Today
Kareem Abdul-Jabbar first became immersed in the history of the 761st Battalion through family friend Leonard “Smitty” Smith, a veteran of the unit. Working with acclaimed writer Anthony Walton, Abdul-Jabbar interviewed surviving members of the battalion to weave together a page-turning narrative based on their memories, stories, and historical accounts, from basic training through the horrors of the battlefield to their postwar experiences.
Trained essentially as a public relations gesture to maintain the support of the black community for the war, the battalion was never intended to see battle. In fact, General Patton originally opposed their deployment, claiming African Americans couldn’t think quickly enough to operate tanks in combatconditions. But in the summer of 1944, following heavy casualties in the fields of France, the Allies—desperate for trained tank personnel—called the battalion up anyway.
While most combat troops fought on the front for a week or two before being rotated back, the men of the 761st served for more than six months, fighting heroically under Patton’s Third Army at the Battle of the Bulge and in the Allies’ final drive across France and Germany. Despite a casualty rate that approached 50 percent and an extreme shortage of personnel and equipment, the 761st would ultimately help liberate some thirty towns and villages, as well as several branch concentration camps. The racism that shadowed them during the war and the prejudice they faced upon their return home are an indelible part of their story. Shining through most of all, however, are the lasting bonds that united them as soldiers and brothers, the bravery they exhibited on the battlefield, and the quiet dignity and patriotism that defined their lives.
At one time, Lew Alcindor was just another kid from New York City with all the usual problems: He struggled with fitting in, with pleasing a strict father, and with overcoming shyness that made him feel socially awkward. But with a talent for basketball, and an unmatched team of supporters, Lew Alcindor was able to transform and to become Kareem Abdul-Jabbar.
From a childhood made difficult by racism and prejudice to a record-smashing career on the basketball court as an adult, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar's life was packed with ""coaches"" who taught him right from wrong and led him on the path to greatness. His parents, coaches Jack Donahue and John Wooden, Muhammad Ali, Bruce Lee, and many others played important roles in Abdul-Jabbar's life and sparked him to become an activist for social change and advancement. The inspiration from those around him, and his drive to find his own path in life, are highlighted in this personal and awe-inspiring journey.
Written especially for young readers, Becoming Kareem chronicles how Kareem Abdul-Jabbar become the icon and legend he is today, both on and off the court.
In On the Shoulders of Giants, indomitable basketball star and bestselling author and historian Kareem Abdul-Jabbar invites the reader on an extraordinarily personal journey back to his birthplace, through one of the greatest political, cultural, literary, and artistic movements in our history, revealing the tremendous impact the Harlem Renaissance had on both American culture and his own life. Beginning with the rise of the Harlem Rens as pioneers of professional basketball, Kareem traces the many streams of historical influence that converged to create the man he is today -- the NBA's all-time leading scorer and a veritable African-American icon.
Travel deep into the soul of the Renaissance -- to the night clubs, restaurants, basketball games, and fabulous parties that have made footprints in Harlem's history. Meet the athletes, jazz musicians, comedians, actors, politicians, entrepreneurs, and writers who not only inspired Kareem's rise to greatness but an entire nation's.
Kareem Abdul-Jabbar was born in the midst of a cultural reawakening, carried on the shoulders of athletes trying to prove there was a lot more at stake than a ball game, men and women who made music that could break your heart, and writers and intellectuals who gave voice to not just the ideals of a movement but the raw emotions. Kareem tells what it took to get these revolutionaries to Harlem and how they changed the world. A world that is still riding on the shoulders of giants.
Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, basketball legend and the NBA's alltime leading scorer, champions a lineup
of little-known African-American inventors in this lively, kid-friendly book.
Did you know that James West invented the microphone in your cell phone? That Fred Jones invented the refrigerated truck that makes supermarkets possible? Or that Dr. Percy Julian synthesized cortisone from soy, easing untold people’s pain? These are just some of the black inventors and innovators scoring big points in this dynamic look at several unsung heroes who shared a desire to improve people’s lives. Offering profiles with fast facts on flaps and framed by a funny contemporary story featuring two feisty twins, here is a nod to the minds behind the gamma electric cell and the ice-cream scoop, improvements to traffic lights, open-heart surgery, and more — inventors whose ingenuity and perseverance against great odds made our world safer, better, and brighter.
Back matter includes an authors’ note and sources.
Profiles here are Peter Sale, the volunteer soldier who turned the tide at Bunker Hill; Joseph Cinque, leader of a daring revolt on the slave ship Amistad; Frederick Douglass, self-taught writer-orator and escaped slave who forced President Lincoln to issue the Emancipation Proclamation years ahead of schedule; Harriet Tubman, who led at least three hundred slaves to freedom; Lewis Latimer, whose scientific work was integral to the achievements of Bell and Edison; and many more.
Shining a bright light on the touchstones of character, these exemplary stories reemphasize the integral role of African Americans in weaving the fabric of our nation and form an empowering legacy from which Americans of all ages can draw inspiration, wisdom and pride.