Today's the Champion's League Final. It's a UEFA tournament of the top teams in Europe, and the top tournament in Europe. Today's action is between Dortmund and Bayern, two German teams.
In honor of the match, here are some books about soccer (or football, as it's known in the rest of the world.)
Exposure by Mal Peet. In the third book in a trilogy about journalist Paul Faustino, Peet explores race and the media while retelling Othello, this time casting him as a South American soccer superstar. Check out the earlier books about Faustino and soccer, The Penalty and Keeper.
Compulsion by Heidi Ayarbe. Jake has OCD. The only time he can turn the numbers off, make it stop, is when he's playing soccer. He's convinced that if he can lead his team to victory in the championship, he'll finally be normal.
Shutout by Brendan Halpin. Amanda and Lena are best friends and can't wait to play soccer together in high school, but when one make varsity and other makes JV, their friendship changes.
Soccer Chick Rules by Dawn Fitzgerald. Tess's school is out of money and is going to cut all sports programs. Tess's life is soccer and the only chance of saving her team is if the town passes a special levy, so Tess is going to do everything she can to make sure it passes.
Outcasts United: The Story of a Refugee Soccer Team That Changed a Town by Warren St. John. When Clarkson, Georgia becomes a refugee resettlement center, the town sees an influx of new immigrants, haunted by what they've left behind. One woman forms a soccer team, The Fugees, for the refugee children, giving them an outlet, and in the process, changing the town. Older readers may wish to go to the adult version, Outcasts United: An American Town, a Refugee Team, and One Woman's Quest to Make a Difference.
Shut Out by Kody Keplinger. In this retelling of Lysistrata, the girls of Hamilton High are sick of the war between the football and soccer teams. So, the girls go on strike-- no more hooking up until they stop fighting. But they may have started an even bigger battle, because when it comes to high school libidos, who can hold out the longest-- the boys or the girls?
Now Is the Time for Running by Michael Williams. When Deo is playing soccer, the soldiers come and massacre his village-- only Deo and his brother Innocent escape. Now they're on the run, trying to make their way from Zimbabwe to South Africa. The journey is dangerous, as is the destination, but once they get there, soccer may once again save them.
Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants by Ann Bashares. Four friends about the spend the summer apart find a magical pair of jeans that miraculously fits all of them. As a way to stay connected, they ship the jeans to each other as Carmen goes to spend the summer with her father, Lena to visit relatives in Greece, Bridget is off to soccer camp, and Libby's staying home to work a minimum wage job. The first in a series, follow it with The Second Summer of the Sisterhood.
Out of Nowhere by Maria Padian. Tom is a soccer star and most popular guy at school in a small town that doesn't want any more Somali refugees to come. When some of the Somali students join Tom's team, he's forced to face their differences and his own prejudices, but it may already be too late.
Who do you want to win today? What are your favorite soccer reads?
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