Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “Kid Athletes: True Tales of Childhood from Sports Legends” as Want to Read:
Kid Athletes: True Tales of Childhood from Sports Legends
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

Kid Athletes: True Tales of Childhood from Sports Legends

(Kid Legends)

4.25  ·  Rating details ·  232 ratings  ·  59 reviews
Forget the gold medals, the championships, and the undefeated seasons. When all-star athletes were growing up, they had regular-kid problems just like you. Baseball legend Babe Ruth was such a troublemaker, his family sent him to reform school. Race car champion Danica Patrick fended off bullies who told her “girls can’t drive.” And football superstar Peyton Manning was fo ...more
Hardcover, 208 pages
Published November 17th 2015 by Quirk Books
More Details... Edit Details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about Kid Athletes, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about Kid Athletes

This book is not yet featured on Listopia. Add this book to your favorite list »

Community Reviews

Showing 1-30
Average rating 4.25  · 
Rating details
 ·  232 ratings  ·  59 reviews

More filters
Sort order
Start your review of Kid Athletes: True Tales of Childhood from Sports Legends
Erin *Proud Book Hoarder*

This book teaches kids that some of the heroes of sports weren't held back by their humble, oppressive beginnings.

Written geared toward children, obviously, but being clueless about sports, I didn't know any of this. The author took well known athletes and showed their upbringing and struggles to get to the top. Babe Ruth opens the book, and perhaps had the most heartbreaking story. He and the next, Jackie Robinson, both showed that having one person in their corner made all the difference in tu
Nov 23, 2015 rated it really liked it
The duo behind KID PRESIDENTS is back with KID ATHLETES. One great thing about them moving into sports is that they can highlight a diverse range of inspirational people. As great as the presidents are, only one of them isn't a white man. The people chosen for KID ATHLETES range from reigning gymnastics Olympic gold medalist Gabby Douglas to sumo legend Jesse Kuhaulua (Takamiyama Daigoro). There's a nice blend of current competitors and historical figures as well as a variety of sports represent ...more
Nov 03, 2015 rated it really liked it
My Thoughts:

This is interesting. I never would have guessed what some athletes did when they were children. This is great for kids who are sports fans.

Do you know that Michael Jackson was electrocuted as a child? Or that Gabby Douglas would would use couches and chairs as springboard to spring herself into the air when she was just a toddler? If you want to know more things like this about famous athletes, this book is for you.

There are also cartoon like illustrated graphics that help to bre
Lily Weinstein
Aug 29, 2017 rated it it was amazing
This book was so GOOD!!!!!!!!
Dec 16, 2018 rated it it was amazing
very educational
Jan 25, 2019 added it
Jun 28, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: edelweiss-arc
ARC from Edelweiss Above the Treeline

Recommended for: Grades 5+

Pairs well with: Other nonfiction anthologies for upper elementary/middle grades, like What on Earth?: 100 of Our Planet's Most Amazing New Species


You know who Babe Ruth is. You know how Tiger Woods is. You know how Yao Ming is. You know who Peyton Manning is.

This book tells you about what these famous athletes from the past century were like when they were your age. And they were a lot more like you than you may imagine.

Ms. Yingling
Nov 11, 2015 rated it liked it
E ARC from

While this brightly colored, highly illustrated corporate biography book comes in at over 200 pages, it's a quick read full of interesting information. The stories of the various sports figures are divided into chapters such as family, adversity, etc. and concentrate more on the issues that the athletes faced as children's and how these events molded their adult careers. Well know figures, such as Babe Ruth, Jackie Robinson and Michael Jordan are mixed with lesser-known c
Carla Johnson-Hicks
Many people look up to sports stars, especially kids. Unfortunately, they are not all worthy of the hero designation, but the athletes in this book all overcame situations in their lives (particularly their childhood) to become the famous athlete they are recognized as being. David Stabler introduced us to well-known athletes and described their upbringing and struggles to get to the top. Both male and female athletes were highlighted and a variety of sports. Some of the issues they dealt with i ...more
Jane Maple
Mar 16, 2019 rated it really liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Wayne McCoy
May 09, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
'Kid Athletes' with stories by David Stabler and illustrations by Doogie Horner tells children true stories from the lives of famous athletes.

The book is divided in to 3 sections telling stories of kids with rough beginnings, how family plays a role and the importance of practicing. There are representations from all kinds of sports starting with baseball and Babe Ruth who liked to cause trouble as a kid. Michael Jordan had to deal with having two taller brothers until he had a growth spurt. Joc
San Diego Book Review
Aug 04, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Reviewed by Hannah Hom for San Diego Book Review

A lot of kids like sports and know about current sports stars but they don’t know that much about important sports figures of the past. "Kid Athletes" by David Stabler introduces readers to 16 stars in a lot of different sports, not just football, basketball, and baseball. Included are people like Babe Ruth, Bruce Lee, Muhammad Ali, Bobby Orr, Michael Jordan, and Danica Patrick.

You can read this entire review and others like it at San Diego Book R
Feb 28, 2018 rated it really liked it
I think this is a book that lots of kids in my third grade classroom will enjoy. The author made some interesting choices when he selected the athletes for each section. Some are very well known, while others are not. Some are will be known to grandparents and some will be known to present readers. The thing, Stabler reminds us, they all have in common is that they were once kids with parents and siblings and obstacles to overcome. It is interesting to read how each of them was determined to ach ...more
This giant collection of amazing kid athletes was fun to read and had cool illustrations so I give it a 3 star rating. I did like it and learning about all of those different people was interesting. There were some athletes I knew of, some I had no clue of, and some that I didn't realize they rose to fame so young. This book is definitely best for middle school students because it is longer and that age may be more seriously interested in specific athletes or sports. This could be used as a rese ...more
Anna Virginia
This book is a fun chapter book for older or middle school students to read as they can connect to the various sports players in the stories.

It's a book full of true stories about the childhood of many famous athletes, men and women alike. This would be a great book for children who are aspiring athletes to read.
Apr 20, 2020 added it
Shelves: diverse
This book is a good chapter book for older or middle school children to read because they can interact with the various sports stars in the books.

It's a book full of fascinating tales from the upbringing of many successful athletes, both men and women. It will be a perfect book for children who are learning to read.
Jan 20, 2020 rated it it was amazing
I like reading about how good the athletes are and finding out things about their childhood. Lots of the athletes had interesting things about them. My favorite athletes were Peyton Manning, Danica Patrick, and the sumo wrestler Jesse Kuhaulua.
Feb 12, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I love hearing about the athlete's childhood. It was a great summary. I am not a sports person, but I wanted to listen to this anyway. I learned so much. This book is very inspiring for kids who want to be athletes and others to pursue their dream.
Jun 01, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: my-kids-books
it was one of the best tales i've read. -anisa
me too! - anya
Jun 25, 2018 rated it really liked it
Entertaining read.
Apr 04, 2020 rated it it was amazing
This book had very cute illustrations and storyline highlighting the obstacles and passion of the athletes during their childhood behind their accomplishments.
Zachary T
Apr 17, 2020 rated it it was amazing
I really enjoyed reading all the stories of the athletes in this book!! It was very interesting to read stories about them before they became famous!
Sep 15, 2015 rated it really liked it
Kid Stuff …

This book was reviewed as part of Amazon's Vine program which included a free copy of the book.

I always assume that when famous athletes are deemed “role models”, it relates to their behavior as adults. In reality, they probably should be given more credit for the obstacles they faced and overcame as youngsters. KID ATHLETES does just that. Presented in an entertaining and relatable manner that is sure to appeal, the book shows how the world’s greatest athletes faced the same difficul
Title: Kid Athletes Author/Stories: David Stabler Genre: Non-Fiction, Sports

Out of all these many stories in this book like Manny Peyton, Micheal Jordan, Tiger Woods, and Jackie Robinson, I totally found Bruce Lee interesting his life story and struggling in trying not to get in trouble was very inspiring to me. Bruce Lee had many opsitcles to over come like trying to stay out of trouble and staying in school, his main problem was trying to stay out of trouble. He was born in San Francisco and
Kylee Vaske
Feb 05, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Nonfiction/ Twin Text Entry #5:

The nonfiction book Kid Athletes: True Tales of Childhood from Sports Legends written by David Stabler, copyrighted in 2015, is an biography book about sports legends including Babe Ruth, Jackie Robinson, Billie Jean King, Peyton Manning, Danica Patrick, Bobby Orr, Michael Jordan, Tiger Woods, Yao Ming, Gabrielle Douglas, Babe Didrikson Zaharias, Bruce Lee, Muhammad Ali, Jesse Kuhaulua, Julie Krone, and Lionel Messi. This book includes important events that occurre
Mark Buxton
Nov 24, 2015 rated it really liked it
I read very few non-fiction books. However, I love sports, and this book shares interesting stories about sports superstars when they were kids. Peyton Manning says the most pressure he's ever felt was dancing the tango on stage in front of his family and friends. I had to look up the video on YouTube after reading his story! I never knew Jackie Robinson was the leader of a street gang or that Babe Ruth was sent to a reform school at age seven. Olympic gymnast Gabby Douglas and 7' 6" Yao Ming we ...more
Jul 14, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: nonfiction
Kid Athletes is a fun yet informative book about some of the country’s favorite athletes as children. Stories range from how they overcame discrimination to how they dealt with family problems or someone’s lack of belief in their skill. Some stories are inherently more inspiring than others (Jackie Robinson choosing baseball over becoming a gang member vs. Peyton Manning being embarrassed to dance the tango in a school performance), but all the stories paint the athletes in a relatable light and ...more
Stephanie Cover2CoverBlog
Kid Athletes is a fun book about various athletes during their childhoods. The tales about about 10 pages long for each athlete and tell a story that helped get them to the place they are today - as well known, successful athletes. Some of the athletes included are Danica Patrick, Mohammad Ali, Bruce Li, Gabby Douglas etc. There are a wide range of sports included, both males and females, and older as well as more recent athletes. So the book did a great job hitting the spectrum.

I enjoyed readi
We think of these amazing athletes as super-human adults, but when they were toddlers, children, or teenagers, they all experienced some difficulties reaching the pinnacle of their sport. Whether it was poverty, broken bones, disabilities or another issue, they achieved success through shear determination and and a strong work-ethic. All types of sports are highlighted, and it's a sure bet that the kid athletes of today will enjoy reading about these superstars.

Chronicled in this collective bio
Stabler has written a very engaging book about some of the childhood experiences of some successful professional athletes. I really liked the focus on these childhood experiences because it opens a window into understanding who these people became as adults. I appreciated the fact that the athletes came from a variety of backgrounds and play(ed) a variety of sports, everything from tennis to basketball to hockey to car racing are represented here. The cartoon illustrations add a fun, humorous to ...more
« previous 1 next »
There are no discussion topics on this book yet. Be the first to start one »

Readers also enjoyed

  • Camp
  • Kid Activists
  • Alamo All-Stars
  • Spy School (Spy School, #1)
  • Evil Spy School (Spy School #3)
  • The Odyssey: A Graphic Novel
  • Who Was Milton Hershey?
  • Who Was Dr. Seuss?
  • Kindness and Wonder: Why Mister Rogers Matters Now More Than Ever
  • Lunch Money
  • Home Sweet Motel (Welcome to Wonderland, #1)
  • The Candymakers and the Great Chocolate Chase (The Candymakers, #2)
  • Boy-Crazy Stacey
  • Sandapalooza Shake-Up (Welcome to Wonderland, #3)
  • Treaties, Trenches, Mud, and Blood
  • The Losers Club
  • Narwhal: Unicorn of the Sea  (A Narwhal and Jelly, #1)
  • I Got This: To Gold and Beyond
See similar books…

Other books in the series

Kid Legends (5 books)
  • Kid Presidents: True Tales of Childhood from America's Presidents
  • Kid Artists: True Tales of Childhood from Creative Legends
  • Kid Authors: True Tales of Childhood from Great Writers
  • Kid Scientists: True Tales of Childhood from Science Superstars (Kid Legends)

Related Articles

Want to encourage young readers to keep up their reading habits? Look no further than this year's buzziest YA and middle-grade graphic novels....
54 likes · 14 comments