Jimmy the Greatest!

Front Cover
Groundwood Books/House of Anansi Press, 2012 - Juvenile Fiction - 48 pages
20 Reviews
Jimmy lives in a small Caribbean town where there's not a whole lot to do. Fortunately though, there is a boxing gym, and one day the owner, Don Apolinar, suggests that Jimmy start training. He also gives Jimmy a cardboard box full of books and newspaper clippings all about Muhammad Ali. Jimmy reads and re-reads as he never has before. He is swept with admiration for Ali who said, "I am the greatest. I said that even before I knew I was." He starts to feel good, realizing that he doesn't need to have a lot of fancy stuff, that he's a pretty good boxer himself, and that he can look forward to the future. But by the time Don Apolinar has to leave for the big city, Jimmy realizes that he can have a great life running the gym, creating a library, dancing and boxing . . . right where he is.

Jairo Buitrago's simple yet inspiring story is complemented by Rafael Yockteng's funny, expressive illustrations, making this a book that will speak to many young readers.

The Spanish edition, ¡Jimmy, el más grande!, was recently named one of "Los mejores libros del año" (Best Books of the Year) by Venezuela's Banco del Libro.

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The illustrations are fun and funky too. - Goodreads
The ending, well, it's unusual for a children's book. - Goodreads
Not as static as some digital illustrations can be. - Goodreads
Digital illustrations show Jimmy's town in detail. - Goodreads

Review: Jimmy the Greatest!

User Review  - Emilia P - Goodreads

Yay! Sometimes you can do great things in your life and stay in your own small town to do them! More people should maybe even do that then. A surprising and welcome lesson on what being the greatest ... Read full review

Review: Jimmy the Greatest!

User Review  - Maeve Mcgill - Goodreads

In this book Jimmy, the main character realizes that there is not a lot to do in his town. The one thing that he becomes interested in is boxing. His trainer gives him books about Muhammad Ali and ... Read full review

About the author (2012)

Jairo Buitrago is a children's book author who has collaborated with Rafael Yockteng on several picture books, and together they won the “A la Orilla del Viento” contest (Mexico). Buitrago has also been named to IBBY's Honor List.
Rafael Yockteng was born in Peru, but has lived in Colombia for most of his life. He has illustrated many highly acclaimed children's books, including Sopa de frijoles / Bean Soup by Jorge Argueta (USBBY Outstanding International Books Honor List) and Mandaderos de la lluvia / Messengers of Rain, a bilingual anthology of Latin American poetry selected by Claudia M. Lee. He also won (with Jairo Buitrago) the “A la Orilla del Viento” contest, organized by Fondo de Cultura Econo´mica de Me´xico.

Bibliographic information