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World Cup 2010: The Indispensable Guide to Soccer and Geopolitics Paperback – February 1, 2010


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 364 pages
  • Publisher: Blue River Press; First Edition edition (February 1, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0981928943
  • ISBN-13: 978-0981928944
  • Product Dimensions: 9 x 6 x 1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (12 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,683,770 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

"[R]efreshingly intelligent . . . .  with a combination of humility and wit that just hits the mark . . . this may be the first American book about soccer that lives and breathes the game." --John Rozehnal, Post Magazine, 4/15/10

"[T]his father-and-son team has produced [a guide] . . . that is many desirable things: comprehensive, insightful, good-humored, and quirky." --Mark Starr, Global Post

Named one of "this year's best books" on World Cup 2010 by the New York Times. --Jack Bell, New York Times

"One of the most indispensable resources . . . as I prepare for the World Cup (both as a fan and a journalist) . . . . [P]acked with historical insights . . . and (easily) some of the best team profiles."
--Charles Gooch, Kansas City Star

A "breezy and insightful guide to the tournament that is targeted to a country where many residents ignore the sport" --David Downs, Gelf Magazine

<span>"[R]efreshingly intelligent </span><span></span><span> </span>. . . .  with <span>a </span><span></span>combination of humility and wit that just hits the <span></span><span> mark . . . this may be the first American book about soccer</span><span> that lives and breathes the game." </span> --John Rozehnal, Post Magazine, 4/15/10 <span id="thumbprint">(edited by author)</span>

"[T]his father-and-son team has produced [a guide] . . . that is many desirable things: comprehensive, insightful, good-humored, and quirky." --Mark Starr, Global Post <span id="thumbprint">(added by author)</span>

Named one of "this year's best books" on World Cup 2010 by the New York Times. --Jack Bell, New York Times <span id="thumbprint">(added by author)</span>

"One of the most indispensable resources . . . as I prepare for the World Cup (both as a fan and a journalist) . . . . [P]acked with historical insights . . . and (easily) some of the best team profiles."<div></div> --Charles Gooch, Kansas City Star <span id="thumbprint">(added by author)</span>

A "breezy and insightful guide to the tournament that is targeted to a country where many residents ignore the sport" --David Downs, Gelf Magazine <span id="thumbprint">(added by author)</span>

About the Author

Steven D. Stark, a former world sports columnist for the Montreal Gazette and the author of three previous books and one e-book, has been a commentator for CNN, National Public Radio, and the Voice of America, where his job was to try to interpret American culture to the rest of the world.

Harrison Stark, currently a student at Brown University, has been a ball boy for Fulham FC, where his claim to fame was that he was once hit by a bottle thrown by an opposing fan. (edited by author)

More About the Author

Steven D. Stark is a former cultural commentator for CNN, National Public Radio, and the Voice of America, as well as the author of four books, one e-book,and a new chapbook of visual poetry. He has written frequently for the New York Times, the Los Angeles Times, the Atlantic Monthly, and both the Boston Globe where he was an op-ed columnist and the Montreal Gazette where he was a world sports columnist. A former Lecturer on Law at Harvard Law School, he is a graduate of Harvard College and Yale Law School. His websites are at www.artofstark.com and www.starkwriting.com

Customer Reviews

3.8 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

14 of 15 people found the following review helpful By S. Aoun on April 10, 2010
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I got this book not too long ago as a gift and I have to say I wasn't expecting anything great, especially given the fact that I had never heard of the authors before. But I was honestly pleasantly surprised b/c it was a lot more than just another regular, amateur-ish guide to soccer. It's different from other guides I've read in the sense that it doesn't simply list facts and figures of each national team. It kinda goes beyond that and explores the cultural phenomenon behind the single event that brings about half the planet together. I felt the book combined soccer and anthropology, which I thought was innovative.
Also really enjoyed the wittiness of the book, makes it so much more pleasurable to read than some other guides I have come across [yes i am a soccer fanatic..!]. I would recommend the book to anyone who has some sort of interest in soccer. It'll give you a great head start on getting to know the national teams and understanding the world cup.
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18 of 23 people found the following review helpful By Sean Mccarthy on May 20, 2010
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I love soccer and politics and I got a good deal for this book on Amazon.com, but the content did not deliver. The two authors do give a comprehensive breakdown of the 32 tournament participants divided into eight groups. They definitely give some facts and figures on each team and also provide predictions and background information for the tournament as a whole. But the quality of writing is poor and the many factual and spelling errors tell me that the authors did not proofread and fact check their text which, with a published piece of work, must be an embarrassment. In publishing a book or a journal article, etc. it is never recommended, as the authors did more than a few times, to say "According to Wikipedia..." That is never an appropriate source of information for a book, let alone a term paper in college. The spelling and factual errors remind me of the slogan of voting in Chicago in the 1960 election: early and often. For example, did you know that Cameroon won the Confederations Cup in 2002 (Page 234)? No? That's because Cameroon not only has never won a Confederations Cup, no such tournament existed in 2002. Also, apparently according to the authors, Australia lost to Brazil 2-0 in the 2006 World Cup 2nd round (Page 210), except that is not true because Australia lost to Italy on a late penalty. Seriously, I could list at least ten more examples, it's that bad. Additionally, their analysis of the state of soccer in the USA chapter leaves a lot to be desired. One particularly terrible passage was (Page 166) because the US woman's soccer team is so good, soccer has become a "women's game" and thus, according to the authors, "has the unintended effect of making it unacceptable to a large part of middle (and male) America." Really?Read more ›
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful By Renocska on April 16, 2010
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
My husband is a soccer fanatic and he loves this book!! It's well written, has a great description on the players, spiced with funny, goofy, sometimes ironic comments. It has description about the countries, what are their history, how they got this far. How do I know? I read it too!!
This books has everything for everybody. If you start to like soccer or if you a huge fan, you'll enjoy it I bet.
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful By A. Labora on April 2, 2010
Format: Paperback
Whether you are an avid football fanatic or just someone who wants to get in on the action during this world cup, this book is a must read for you. With information about each of the teams as well as various fun an interesting facts about the game and the tournament, it is an excellent, easy-to-read guide for everyone! As someone who doesn't know all that much about soccer, this guide was especially helpful for understanding the phenomenon that really does have everyone in the world watching! READ IT!
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Carlo Coppetti on April 5, 2010
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Stark & Stark's guide to the World Cup is a must read for anyone who wants to learn more about the phenomenon that causes the earth to stand still for an entire month every four years. As the authors point out, the World Cup is the greatest cultural event of our time, and football is its language. So, if you're looking for a witty introduction to the world of football and its deep cultural implications, this book is for you!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By A. Crane on May 23, 2010
Format: Paperback
Overall I thoroughly enjoyed reading this book. Apart from the odd typo or mistake the sassy approach the authors take made reading this book a blast. As long as you're looking for something fun and enjoyable to read about the world cup I would say look no further. If all you want is something dry and factual there isn't too much to be gained here, one could find most of the information on the web, probably even wikipedia, but you certainly won't find everything you're looking for presented in such an easy to read format. I found myself laughing on more than one occasion and strongly recommend this book to everyone look for a light read on such a great topic.
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