The Queen of Katwe

The Queen of Katwe

A Story of Life, Chess, and One Extraordinary Girl's Dream of Becoming A Grandmaster

Book - 2012
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Now a major motion picture starring Academy Award winner Lupita Nyong ' o and David Oyelowo, directed by Mira Nair.

The "astonishing" ( The New York Times Book Review ) and "inspirational" ( Shelf Awareness ) true story of Phiona Mutesi--a teenage chess prodigy from the slums of Uganda.

One day in 2005 while searching for food, nine-year-old Ugandan Phiona Mutesi followed her brother to a dusty veranda where she met Robert Katende.

Katende, a war refugee turned missionary, had an improbable dream: to empower kids in the Katwe slum through chess--a game so foreign there is no word for it in their native language. Laying a chess­board in the dirt, Robert began to teach. At first children came for a free bowl of porridge, but many grew to love the game that--like their daily lives--requires persevering against great obstacles. Of these kids, one girl stood out as an immense talent: Phiona.

By the age of eleven Phiona was her country's junior champion, and at fifteen, the national champion. Now a Woman Candidate Master--the first female titled player in her country's history--Phiona dreams of becoming a Grandmaster, the most elite level in chess. But to reach that goal, she must grapple with everyday life in one of the world's most unstable countries. The Queen of Katwe is a "remarkable" (NPR) and "riveting" ( New York Post ) book that shows how "Phiona's story transcends the limitations of the chessboard" (Robert Hess, US Grandmaster).
Publisher: New York : Scribner, 2012
Edition: 1st Scribner hardcover ed
ISBN: 9781451657821
Branch Call Number: B Mutesi Crothers 2012
Characteristics: 232 p. : ill. ; 24 cm


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ser_library Oct 11, 2017

more background and context than the movie

Oct 22, 2016

Loved it. I was inspired to watch youtube videos about her. And, not in the book, she gets to fulfil a dream of a house for herself and her family. I was *so happy* to learn that.

Mar 06, 2013

Incredible how some people are forced to live their lives in this world. Also incredible the amount of raw talent and intelligence that must be missed among these people for want of opportunity. In this case one chess club in a slum uncovered several rough diamonds. The focus is primarily on the girl Phiona, and her rise from extreme poverty with little or no chance of an education or even basic survival into one of the world's most talented chess players. Excellent book.

Dec 17, 2012

An amazing story of how human talent can rise given a half a chance. It's a revelation to read how large numbers of people live in parts of the world (reaffirms how truly blessed we are). You get a glimpse of our world through the eyes of a young girl taking her first ride in a motor vehicle outside of her Ugandan slum to a chess match in a hotel with restaurants.

Dec 03, 2012

The story of Phiona Mutesi and her rise to being the top woman chess player in Uganda is riveting. She and her family struggle to get enough to eat and often are locked out of their shack because they cannot pay the rent in the slum where she lives. Robert Katende is the man who finds a way to reach these children. The book is written in a very choppy manner but I hope that many learn about these amazing children and the man who has helped them find a different future. Phiona spoke on the East Coast the end of Nov, 2012 and soon may be hitting national news. All the best to her and her peers.


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