Hodder & Stoughton scores with Sonny Bill Williams debut

Hodder & Stoughton scores with Sonny Bill Williams debut

Hodder & Stoughton will publish the first book by All Blacks rugby player Sonny Bill Williams entitled You Can’t Stop the Sun from Shining.  

Huw Armstrong, senior commissioning editor at Hodder & Stoughton, acquired world rights alongside Hachette Australia and Hachette New Zealand from the Fordham Company in a global deal. The book will be published in October 2021.  

“A hugely decorated athlete – in Rugby League, Rugby Union, and boxing – Sonny Bill Williams is one of the most recognisable figuresin world sport,” the pubisher said. “In his remarkable career, he has won the Rugby World Cup twice and reached the final of the Rugby League equivalent."

"In You Can’t Stop the Sun from Shining, co-written by Alan Duff, Sonny Bill Williams goes into detail about his childhood in inner-city Auckland, to achieving the highest sporting moments at Twickenham, Eden Park and Sydney’s Olympic Stadium. He was the first Muslim to play for the All Blacks and the book will discuss the importance of his faith, his family, and his courage in speaking out for the vulnerable.” 

Williams. now currently a boxer, said: “Telling my story is not something that is easy for me. But I know there are young kids who are growing up dreaming of a different life to the one they are living every day. Dreaming of being the best they can be in sport or conquering the world in other ways. And so, sharing my story, the good and bad of it, is to help them and to inspire others. To show that hard work and focus can make a difference. And to also show that you need to follow your heart and your own moral compass and if you do, change can happen. Working together with Alan Duff and Hachette means I know my story will be told the right way” 

Armstrong said: “Sonny Bill Williams has the lot – undisputed talent, a fierce moral compass, and an incredible story. He’s inspired millions around the world, both on and off the field. This is a powerful memoir about his faith, family, and finding his way to becoming one of the world greatest sports stars. There’s never quite been a player like Sonny, and I can’t wait for it to publish.”