This summer, DC Public Library is teaming up with the Washington Mystics to recommend great reads that you can check out with your library card! Each month we will be posting Read Feed entries that spotlight titles around a theme. June’s theme is Pride. In honor of Pride month, we have selected some amazing autobiographies and biographies for both adults and young adults that explore the lives and careers of LGBTQIA+ athletes. Check out the library’s Pride Month page to find more great reads for all ages and the Mystic's Pride page to learn more about how they are celebrating this month. Happy Reading!
In My Skin: My Life On and Off The Basketball Court, Brittney Griner
Hailed by ESPN as the world's most famous female basketball player, Brittney Griner, the dunking phenom and national sensation who is shattering stereotypes and breaking boundaries, now shares her coming-of-age story, revealing how she found her strength to overcome bullies and to embrace her authentic self. In her heartfelt memoir, she reflects on painful episodes in her life and describes how she came to celebrate what makes her unique--inspiring lessons she now shares. Filled with all the humor and personality Griner has become known for, In My Skin is more than a glimpse into one of the most original personalities in sports; it's also a powerful call to readers to be true to themselves, to love who they are on the inside and out.
Singled Out: The True Story of Glenn Burke, Andrew Maraniss
From New York Times bestselling author Andrew Maraniss comes the remarkable true story of Glenn Burke, a "hidden figure" in the history of sports- the inventor of the high five and the first openly gay MLB player. Perfect for fans of Steve Sheinkin and Daniel James Brown. Packed with black-and-white photographs and thoroughly researched, never-before-seen details about Glenn's life, Singled Out is the fascinating story of a trailblazer in sports--and the history and culture that shaped the world around him.
The Umpire is Out: Calling the Game and Living My True Self, Dale Scott
Dale Scott's career as a professional baseball umpire spanned nearly forty years, including thirty-three in the Major Leagues, from 1985 to 2017. Scott's story isn't only about his leading a sort of double life, then opening himself up to the world and discovering a new generosity of spirit. It's also a baseball story, filled with insights and memorable anecdotes that come so naturally from someone who spent decades among the world's greatest baseball players, managers, and games. Scott's story is fascinating both for his umpiring career and for his being a pioneer for LGBTQ people within baseball and across sports.
My Shot: Balancing it All and Standing Tall, Elena Delle Donne
Elena Delle Donne, 2015 WNBA MVP and 2016 Olympic gold medalist, shares her inspirational story of being a young basketball prodigy who gave up an impressive basketball scholarship for family and self-discovery. During her first year of college, she walked away from a scholarship and chance to play for the most prestigious women's college basketball program so she could be close to her older sister, Lizzie, who has several disabilities and can only communicate through hand-over-hand signing. Burned out and questioning her passion for basketball, she attended the University of Delaware and took up volleyball for a year. Eventually, she found her way back to her first love, playing basketball. She went on to become the second overall selection during the 2013 WNBA draft and the WNBA's 2015 MVP. Elena Delle Donne delivers a powerful and motivational story of overcoming the challenges of competitive sports through balancing hard work and the support of a loving family.
Coming Up For Air, Tom Daley
Tom Daley is one of the most beloved athletes of our time, having competed as a diver in four Olympics, garnering medals and finally, in 2021 in Tokyo, winning gold. But few people know the realities of his life beyond the pool--his struggles, his secret triumphs and the mindset he needed to cultivate to become a champion. In this deeply personal book, Tom explores the experiences that have shaped him and the qualities that brought him success and joy--from the resilience he developed competing at a world-class level, to the courage he discovered while reclaiming the narrative around his sexuality, to the perspective that family life has brought him. Inspiring, candid and compulsively readable, Coming Up for Air offers an intimate window into the life and mindset of an athlete and advocate who has left an indelible imprint on sports.