June 13, 2024

Serena Williams announces first children’s book, dedicates to ‘all little girls’

Serena Williams is releasing her first children’s book. The tennis star announced The Adventures of Qai Qai this week, her upcoming book set to be published in fall 2022.

Based on characters created by entertainment technology company Invisible Universe, The Adventures of Qai Qai is centered around a doll Williams and husband Alexis Ohanian gave their daughter Olympia a few years ago.

Williams runs an Instagram account for Qai Qai that now has over 350K followers. Now, her story continues with The Adventures of Qai Qai.

The 2021 Met Gala Celebrating In America: A Lexicon Of Fashion - Arrivals
Serena Williams attends The 2021 Met Gala on Sept. 13, 2021 in New York City. (Photo by Mike Coppola/Getty Images)

In an official statement to People Magazine, Williams shared, “Storytime is such an important pillar of our bedtime routine, like so many others around the world…Qai Qai is a special member of our family and we hope The Adventures of Qai Qai will give others a new way to welcome Qai Qai into their own home.”

In his statement, Ohanian said, “I know one thing four years ago that was really important to us was to make sure that Olympia had a Black baby doll…and have that be a very important first doll for her, if for no other reason than to just expose her to something that can hopefully break a cycle that we know exists.”

In the upcoming children’s book’s dedication, Williams writes, “This book is dedicated to all little girls…let this book be a constant reminder that you can do anything you put your mind to. Imagine it, believe it, do it.”

2020 Women's ASB Classic: Day 7
Alexis Olympia and Alexis Ohanian congratulate Serena Williams at ASB Tennis Centre on Jan. 12, 2020. (Photo by Hannah Peters/Getty Images)

Ohanian says Qai Qai resonated with people all over the world. “Very quickly we started to see this story play out online of people who were just so enamored with this doll and were really excited to hear about the stories and adventures she was going to go on,” he added.

“I think there’s a lot of people who have resonated with this idea of a really mischievous, and fun, and clever, and brave, and strong little girl doll and I’m excited to see all the places she goes and I do hope it can inspire kids – boys, girls, Black, white – all over the world to just have fun and dream.”

The Adventures of Qai Qai is illustrated by Yesenia Moises and will be published on Sept. 27, 2022 by Feiwel and Friends.

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