Tuesday, 16 August 2016

Book review: From the Sideline - Amy Avanzino (Wake Up Call #2)

After losing her marriage, life savings, and waistline, Autumn Kovac is terrified of being hit by more heartache. So when her only child decides to try out for the football team, the overprotective, sports-illiterate mom has a near phobic reaction. But Zachary hasn’t smiled since his father left, and she’s desperate to make him happy (and doing nothing and hoping for the best hasn’t been working). She reluctantly enters a new world of youth competitive sports, full of overzealous coaches with Vince Lombardi dreams and fanatical parents trying to achieve vicarious glory. 

Unexpectedly, Autumn begins transforming within this strangely addictive new culture, finding her voice, facing her past, tackling her fears…and uncovering the secret that’s been keeping her from her son. After meeting her ideal catch, she finds herself back in the dating game and discovers some fierce competition of her own. Will Autumn make it off the sideline? Can the underdog finally win? 

My opinion.
What a treat From The Sideline was. I truly enjoyed reading this second installment in Amy Avanzino's Wake Up Call series. Belgium is not particularly known for their football knowledge, since our "football" is the "soccer" kind of football. At the start of the story therefore, I knew as much - or maybe even less - than Autumn did about this game.
With Autumn however Amy wrote one of the most relatable characters I've been introduced to in a while. Apart from her anxiety, there's not much we have in common, but for some reason I just understood her, which made her a perfect main character. I loved seeing both Autumn and Zachary grow. Both their relationship and their individual journeys were emotional to say the least and I teared up quite a few times reading this.
The connection I felt with Autumn also made it easy to get caught up in her growing interest in and joy for the game, and Amy's writing was so contagious I felt myself cheering 'Zeke' and his team on. A joy to read.


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