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I Am a Gymnast.

I Am a Gymnast As told by MacKenzie Foster Photographed by Jane Feldman Random House Books for Young Readers June 2000, $14.99, ISBN 0-375-80251-7

"Hi, you don't know me yet, but maybe someday you will." These are the words of adorable young MacKenzie Foster, the subject of the inviting new book about a girl and her sport. This picture book, narrated by MacKenzie, gives vivid insight into the dedication that young Miss Foster makes daily to train in rhythmic gymnastics. With the guidance of her coach, international champion Wendy Hilliard, MacKenzie enlightens children and adults alike on the work and sacrifice that young people must go through to have an opportunity to compete in the Olympics.

MacKenzie explains from her child's perspective the complex sport of gymnastics and the many people who are involved in training Miss Foster--she is even pictured with legends in the sports such as Bela Karolyi, Dominique Dawes and Shannon Miller. The book does a wonderful job of not only capturing MacKenzie in her training, but it invites the reader into her home life and her personal thoughts about the events and people around her. The readers see that MacKenzie is an ordinary child doing extraordinary things. One such event was MacKenzie's team performance featured for "National Gymnastics Day" on the Today show.

I Am a Gymnast, the third book in Random House's Young Dreamers Series, a must for young gymnastics enthusiasts and a great pictorial teaching tool for children who want to know more about the sport and the athletes involved in it. But it is also worth picking up for all of your young dreamers. Seeing is believing, and I believe we will hear a lot more from MacKenzie in the future.

Michelle Gipson is a recent graduate of Hampton University's graduate program, is an adolescent leadership instructor and an intern at BIBR.
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Title Annotation:Review
Author:Gipson, Michelle R.
Publication:Black Issues Book Review
Article Type:Book Review
Date:Sep 1, 2000
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