“I Always Wanted To Be Somebody,” the autobiography of tennis legend Althea Gibson, has been re-released by New Chapter Press.
Originally published in 1960, the book had fallen out of circulation and was only available for exorbitant prices by book resellers. However, New Chapter Press, a leading publisher of tennis books, worked with the Althea Gibson family, estate and the newly formed Althea Gibson Community Tennis Association to republish the book and make it available for the masses at a reasonable $19.95 price ($9.95 via Amazon Kindle here https://www.amazon.com/dp/1937559971/ref=cm_sw_r_tw_dp_AQM1EE03M4KEZRT2ZJMK). A portion of sales for the book will benefit the Althea Gibson Community Tennis Association.
“I Always Wanted To Be Somebody” is the intimate and candid story of a girl who grew up in the asphalt environs of Harlem, skipping school, drinking hard liquor, stealing and fist-fighting, but went on to break the color barrier in tennis and achieving the pinnacle of the sport by winning Wimbledon and the U.S. Championships and becoming an inspiration for many future champions.
Hall of Fame tennis legend and pioneer Billie Jean King, who said she used to sleep with “I Always Wanted To Be Somebody” under her pillow as a girl, contributed the foreword to the new edition, writing, “Althea was our Jackie Robinson of tennis, and the barriers show broke down and the doors she opened have paved the way for generations of tennis players. Her contributions to our sport and to our world are many. Without Althea, there may not have been an Arthur Ashe, Leslie Allen, Zina Garrison, James Blake, Chanda Rubin, Mal Washington, Venus Williams, Serena Williams, Coco Gauff, Francis Tiafoe or Naomi Osaka.”
Gibson is one of the most iconic and talented female athletes of all time, breaking the color barrier in tennis and becoming the first black player to play and win at Wimbledon and the U.S. Championships. After becoming the first black player to participate in the U.S. Championships (the modern-day U.S. Open) in 1950 (three years after Jackie Robinson integrated baseball), she won the first of her back-to-back titles there in 1957, also winning singles titles at Wimbledon in 1957 and 1958. After her tennis career, she also became the first black person on the LPGA Tour in golf. She was inducted into the International Tennis Hall of Fame in 1971 and died in 2003. She was an athlete, coach, leader, activist, singer, actor and one of the most illustrious and celebrated tennis players in history.
Founded in 1987, New Chapter Press (www.NewChapterMedia.com) is also the publisher of “Juan Martin del Potro: The Gentle Giant” by Sebastian Torok, “The Pros: The Forgotten Era of Tennis” by Peter Underwood, “The Greatest Tennis Matches of All-Time” and “Pete Sampras: Greatness Revisited” by Steve Flink, “Pioneers of the Game: The Evolution of Men’s Professional Tennis” by Marshall Happer, “The Education of a Tennis Player” by Rod Laver with Bud Collins, “The Secrets of Spanish Tennis” by Chris Lewit, “The Bud Collins History of Tennis” by Bud Collins, “The Wimbledon Final That Never Was” by Sidney Wood, “Titanic: The Tennis Story” by Lindsay Gibbs, “Macci Magic: Extracting Greatness From Yourself And Others” by Rick Macci with Jim Martz, “Andy Murray, Wimbledon Champion: The Full Extraordinary Story” by Mark Hodgkinson, “Cattle To Courts: A History of Tennis In Texas” by Ken McAllister, “Sport of a Lifetime: Enduring Personal Stories From Tennis” by Judy Aydelott, “Trojan Tennis: A History of the Storied Men’s Tennis Program at the University of Southern California” by S. Mark Young, “Absolute Tennis: The Best And Next Way To Play The Game” by Marty Smith, “How To Permanently Erase Negative Self Talk So You Can Be Extraordinary” by Emily Filloramo, “Acing Depression: A Tennis Champion’s Toughest Match” by Cliff Richey and Hilaire Richey Kallendorf, “Your Playbook For Beating Depression: Essential Strategies For Managing and Living with Depression” by Cliff Richey and Mary Garrison, “The Greatest Jewish Tennis Players of All-Time” by Sandra Harwitt, “Roger Federer: Quest for Perfection” by Rene Stauffer, “The Days of Roger Federer” and “On This Day In Tennis History” by Randy Walker, “Jan Kodes: A Journey To Glory From Behind The Iron Curtain” by Jan Kodes with Peter Kolar, “Tennis Made Easy” by Kelly Gunterman, “A Player’s Guide To USTA League Tennis” by Tony Serksnis, “Court Confidential: Inside The World Of Tennis” by Neil Harman, “A Backhanded Gift” by Marshall Jon Fisher, “Boycott: Stolen Dreams of the 1980 Moscow Olympic Games” by Tom Caraccioli and Jerry Caraccioli (www.Boycott1980.com), “Internet Dating 101: It’s Complicated, But It Doesn’t Have To Be” by Laura Schreffler, “How To Sell Your Screenplay” by Carl Sautter, “Bone Appetit: Gourmet Cooking For Your Dog” by Suzan Anson, “The Rules of Neighborhood Poker According to Hoyle” by Stewart Wolpin among others.