Posts Tagged 'soccer'

Gutless by Carl Deuker

Genre:  Sports Fiction

# of Pages:  329

Brock Ripley has always considered himself gutless because he tends to shy away from aggressive plays in all sports.  He’s even considering quitting soccer for next season because he feels responsible for losing the championship game for his team.  Then, he’s asked to play with Hunter Gates in the local park because he needs to practice throwing the football to someone.  He’s nervous, but Hunter is the kind of guy you do not say no to and you desperately try not to get on his bad side.  Brock is fast and has an eye for the ball, but is terrified of getting tackles in a real football setting.  Hunter’s dad tries to convince Brock to try out for football because they think the two of them could be a good pair.  Brock’s parents need some serious convincing to let him even try out, but as a freshmen who has never played before he ends up on the freshmen team and even on that he is not a superstar.  Meanwhile, he befriends an outgoing, silly, nerdy, Asian kid named Richie who immediately becomes a target for bullying from Hunter and his friends.  As Brock tries to be friends with Richie and play on the football team he finds himself ignoring the harsh treatment that Richie keeps getting from the older, bigger players.  Eventually things escalate and Brock must decide whose side he’s going to be on.

Fans of sports fiction will once again enjoy this new addition by Carl Deuker.  He includes both football and soccer action that sports fans will love, but also includes a lot on the topic of bullying that is so timely today.  The foreshadowing will instantly put the reader on alert with a sense of foreboding, but the characters are engaging enough that you have to keep reading to find out what happens.

Pretty Tough by Liz Tigelaar

Genre:  Sports Fiction

Age Level:  14 and up

# of Pages:  246

RAC Book:  Yes

Krista and Charlie are two sisters who do not get along in any way.  Krista strives to be perfect and adored at all times, while Charlie seems determined to be a loner.  The story changes perspective between the two sisters which allows the reader to understand where both girls are coming from.  Krista has a lot of insecurities which she tries to compensate for by looking perfect on the outside.  Charlie feels her sister and everyone else in school failed to stand up for her in the past and does not have time for them now.

Everything begins to change when  a new soccer coach, Martie, decides to make girls soccer great again.  She recruits Charlie, a strong athlete, which annoys Krista because she feels like Charlie is taking the spotlight away from her for her senior year.  Charlie tries out purely to annoy Krista and has no intention of staying on the team, but finds she enjoys actually fitting in somewhere.

This book covers many issues like high school life, friendship, sports, and sisters.  Both sisters learn a lot through their time together on the soccer field and come to appreciate each other in new ways.  This change in their relationship is not easy, however, and they have to jump many hurdles in order to be able to play well together.  Of course there are also romantic moments in this teen story.  A good story for girls and athletes who enjoy this type of writing.