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PlayOn! Holiday Gift Guide

November 26, 2013 04:47 PM

Hope Solo: My Story (Young Readers’ Edition)

Age: 8+

Adapted for young readers from Hope Solo: A Memoir of Hope, this book tells the life story of one of the world’s greatest goalkeepers, from her childhood in Richland, Wash., through her years in Washington Youth Soccer and at the University of Washington, to her global fame with the U.S. Women’s National Team. A unique, behind-the-scenes look at the life of a soccer star, it’s an inspiring tale for Washington Youth Soccer players of all ages.


The Flea: The Amazing Story of Leo Messi

Age: 8+

MessiLionel Messi is the world’s greatest soccer player, dazzling viewers of Barcelona FC or Argentina’s National Team. But where did he come from? How did he learn the eye-popping, body-twisting skills that have made him the most exciting player of his generation? In The Flea, follow Messi from his Argentina to the Camp Nou, and gain new insights into what drives "The Flea" to be the best soccer player in the world.


Pele: King of Soccer (El Rey de Futbol)

Age: 4-8

PelePerfect for younger children, Pele: King of Soccer tells of Pele’s rise from poverty in Brazil to the pinnacle of the soccer world. With both English and Spanish words on the same page, it’s also a great way to introduce your youngster to a second language — all backdropped by the common tongue of the beautiful game.


Outcasts United: The Story of a Refugee Soccer Team That Changed a Town (Young People’s Edition)

Age: 12+

OutcastsIn the late 1980s and early 1990s, the town of Clarkston, Georgia, became a settlement home for refugees from around the world. Outcasts United tells the story of The Fugees, a unique youth soccer team cobbled together from refugee boys from around the world — Bosnia, Congo, Liberia, Sudan, Burundi, Afghanistan, Iraq and others — and the inspiring Jordanian woman who volunteered to lead them in their journey not merely to success on the soccer field, but to a place to call home in a lonely, confusing and frightening new world. A truly inspiring story of the power of soccer to tear down social, cultural and economic barriers, and unite people around the world to a common cause.


Fever Pitch

Age: 14+

feverpitchRegarded as one of the greatest soccer books ever written, Fever Pitch is author Nick Hornby’s attempt to rationalize his unbridled passion for soccer — or, as the Briton calls it, football. His particular affinity, for London’s Arsenal FC, overshadows all other elements of his life, from childhood, to young adulthood, to manhood. Jobs and relationships each take a backseat to "footy," which — as any longtime soccer fan will no doubt sympathize — only rarely reciprocates his love. Fans of Hornby’s other books (notably, About a Boy and High Fidelity) will recognize elements of them in Fever Pitch, from Hornby’s employment at a record shop, to his awkward and unlikely bond with a young relative briefly put into his charge. Ultimately, it is Hornby’s passion for soccer that drives the book forward — even as it drives everything else in his life away.



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