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Soccerland (The International Sports Academy) Kindle Edition

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Length: 200 pages Word Wise: Enabled
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Editorial Reviews

From School Library Journal

Gr 5-8–Flora Dupre loves soccer, and before her mom died of cancer, she made a promise that one day she was going to play for the U.S. Women's National Team. She dominates the team at her secondary school, but she is not being challenged, and she longs to play with more seasoned players than those in her little Maine town. She gets her chance when her coach tells her that she has been invited to Colorado for a two-week National Team Identification Camp, where she quickly finds out that things are quite different in the big leagues. The head coach seems to have it in for her with constant criticism; a clique of mean girls makes fun of her large stature; and she feels very alone in the pool of 100 girls who are just as determined as she is to get one of the few spots on the Under-15 national team. Choat's background in sports journalism is obvious. While soccer action takes precedence over any deep character development, readers will enjoy following Flora's new friendships, budding romance, and changing relationship with her father. Themes of sportsmanship and the mental and physical aspects of training are subtly woven into the story line. John Feinstein, Tim Green, and Mike Lupica have broadened the availability of engaging sports fiction with male protagonists; this is a solid purchase for collections looking to expand female representation in their sports-themed novels.–Kim Dare, Fairfax County Public Schools, VAα(c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

From Booklist

With the singleminded determination that a lot of young athletes will relate to, Flora Dupre is interested in one thing and one thing only: playing in the Olympics and World Cup as a member of the U.S. Women’s National Team. She’s by far the best soccer player in the not-exactly-talent-fertile state of Maine, but when she’s asked to the tryouts for the Under-15 Girls’ Soccer Team, she encounters all sorts of physical and mental challenges that she has never dealt with before. A few subplots, especially those concerning Flora’s family back home, feel undeveloped and purposeful, and her repeated internal monologues expressing just how much she wants to play for the national team get hammered home a few too many times, but the soccer-specific details are handled quite well. Choat, a longtime sports journalist, obviously knows the ins-and-outs of an elite training facility, so teens either looking to live vicariously through Flora, or those who share her singular focus, will likely enjoy this novel. Grades 7-10. --Ian Chipman

Product Details

  • File Size: 315 KB
  • Print Length: 200 pages
  • Publisher: Skyscape (May 9, 2012)
  • Publication Date: May 9, 2012
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B007TX6PIC
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Lending: Not Enabled
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Not Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #306,336 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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More About the Author

Beth Choat has been a sports journalist for 20 years. She's written for Sports Illustrated for Kids and was a staff journalist for Sports Illustrated, ABC Sports, and 3 Olympic Committees. She's covered world, Olympic, European, and national championships from the inside, where she's observed and been told first-hand what it's like to be a young, female, world-class athlete.
Beth Choat's expertise is sports; her passion is the empowerment of young women. A graduate of Phillips Exeter Academy and Williams College, Choat was raised in the Adirondack Mountains and now lives in Las Vegas.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

8 of 8 people found the following review helpful By KR on September 30, 2010
Format: Hardcover
Soccerland is a great read for any young athlete -- girl or boy. Beth Choat makes you feel like you're at the training camp with Flora as she tries to prove she belongs on the national team.
There are bullies and boys, tests on the field -- and text messages off it. With the Women's World Cup next year, the timing couldn't be better.
For any sports-minded kid who has to write a book report on a subject he or she loves, this is the perfect choice!
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Bibliophile on October 8, 2010
Format: Hardcover
Soccerland is a gem for any (young) athlete in any sport at any level. The book is full of sympathetic and authentic characters, credible dialog and down-to-earth scenarios. Choat captures the world through a 14-year-old serious athlete's eyes - a treat to read! Choat also offers a glimpse into the training at the elite level which was fascinating to read - we can all dream, no?
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By BookLovinMama on October 1, 2010
Format: Hardcover
Choat takes great care to craft characters that are true to young, elite athletes' lived experiences. A great book for all to enjoy!
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By S. Power TOP 500 REVIEWER on January 12, 2013
Format: Hardcover Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
Soccerland by Beth Choat tells the story of Flora a young soccer player who gets a change to go to the international sports facility and go to a camp where they pick the girls that have a chance to play on the under fifteen US soccer team. At the camp Flora faces homesickness, difficult social situations, cutthroat competition and a coach that's hard to read.

I almost didn't read this one. I'm not a fan of books that are put out by minor publishers because the writing and editing is almost always bad. This book however was terrific and felt very professionally edited. I loved reading about Flora and the adventures and stresses she had while at camp and couldn't put it down.

Appropriateness: There is no adult content in this book and only a hint of romance. While this is a sports book it's appeal is broad enough to interest those who aren't obsessed with sports. I recommend this book to readers 10-15
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Adirondack reader on March 6, 2011
Format: Hardcover
I am so impressed by Beth's new book. It is funny, wise, sensitive and right on! I wish I had read it growing up to learn then some of the important messages this book holds. Confidence, courage and a desire to live one's dreams.....outstanding read! I look forward to the next in the series.
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Format: Hardcover Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
When it seems as though all odds are against you that is when it is imperative to reach deep and channel the strength within. It's not always easy, but if we want to find success it is necessary. In Beth Choat's book SOCCERLAND we see that this challenge is for individuals of all ages.

We meet Flora Dupre, a young girl who loves soccer and wants to be the best she can at it, but her mother's diagnosis and death from cancer threatens to derail her from her goal. Soccerland, the place she was able to create with her mother, was the opportunity she had to let the cares of the day go and just focus on her passion. When are dreams seem as though they have a chance of coming true will she be able to focus, regroup and allow herself to keep pushing forward?

I think this message is important for young women and men but also for adults who might be sidelined by life on their way to pursuing their passion. I think Beth shows that this can happen at any age, but you have to be willing to press forward and not allow it to deter you. Just as Beth's mother tried to provide a place for Beth to be able to mentally escape her ordeal, we can show that what is happening to us doesn't have to stop us from pressing onward.

Definitely a book that will build confidence and showcase the possibilities in life, Beth Choat's SOCCERLAND hits the mark.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By OutlawPoet TOP 1000 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on January 22, 2013
Format: Hardcover Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
Every so often you read one of those books that you want to buy for every young girl in your life. This is one of those books. Although the soccer details are fantastic, any girl with an interest in any team activity is sure to love this one.

Flora is a terrific character. At first, I was a little thrown by the colloquialisms she uses, but I soon loved the look at her little community and the people who live there. She represents a part of America little seen in books. Although the story is fantastic on its own, the book gives some good (but subtle) lessons about self esteem, health, team work, and individualism. Flora is the kid you wish you were and the kid you want your daughter to grow up to be.

After reading this book, I want to take a step back in time and join a soccer team. I feel like I missed out on something!!!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Neal Reynolds VINE VOICE on November 9, 2012
Format: Hardcover Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
A teen book's ending is of extreme importance because the ultimate intent of the author is generally revealed there. Soccerland is a good example of a book with the perfect ending that speaks realistically and inspirationally to the young reader.

The boook as a whole gives the reader a realistic look at a soccer camp constructed to develop a US team for the Olympics and other international competitions. The main character, a young teen raised in a small farming community who has dreams of being a soccer star is indelibly drawn and her relationships with varied personalities in her age and gender group are likewise well drawn. The camp coach, a young man from England, supplies a humorous contrast to American speech and manners.

Great for the intended audience and worthwhile to many readers outside of said target audience.
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