New York Knicks captain and six-time NBA All-Star Amar’e Stoudemire will become a children’s book author next year with the launch of his STAT: Standing Tall And Talented series for middle-grade readers, published by Scholastic. The series, which is named after his nickname, will be based on his life and the obstacles he overcame to become a successful sports figure. The first book, STAT #1: Home Court, stars 11-year-old Amar’e Stoudemire, who steps in to help when a group of older boys starts bullying his friends on the basketball court. It will be published on August 1, 2012, in both hardcover and paperback; books two and three will follow in October 2012 and January 2013.

According to Scholastic, Stoudemire is committed to turning kids, especially boys, into readers. In a statement, Stoudemire said, “I decided to write for children because although I am an avid reader now, I wish I had read more as a child. I hope that together with Scholastic, we can creatively inspire a new generation to read.”

The deal for world rights was negotiated by Happy Walters from Rogue Sports, Aaron Spiewak from Designers Management Agency, and Cathy Hemming from McCormick and Williams for Amar’e Stoudemire, and Debra Dorfman, v-p and publisher for Paperbacks, Nonfiction and Licensing at Scholastic.