Believe it or not, fall is on its way (and it's hard to believe it when it feels like 100 degrees). If you're a college football fan, this past weekend was probably a fun one for you (unless your team lost...but remember that it's still early in the season! This could be your year!). With this upcoming weekend being the start of NFL season, football fans are definitely ready for some action. Why not spend some time during commercials reading a fun football book?
Kids love books about lists and fun facts (I had a very favorite "book of lists" that I repeatedly checked out of the library when I was a child), so 1st and 10: Top 10 Lists of Everything Football should be just the thing for young football fantatics. Everything from "Greatest Rushers," "Best Fans," and even "Touchdown Celebrations" are creatively detailed.
I love finding biographies that feature people that I (and perhaps many others) have never heard about; Between the Lines: How Ernie Barnes Went From the Football Field to the Art Gallery is one of my favorite recently published biographies. Growing up in 1940s North Carolina, becoming an artist wasn't viewed as a viable career path for Ernie Barnes. His football finesse caught the attention of the NFL, in which he played for a number of teams before finally retiring in 1965. His second career as an artist was enormously successful; in addition to painting for the NFL, he was also the official sports artist for the 1984 Los Angeles Olympics, the commissioned artist for the NBA's 50th anniversary celebration, and also painted scenes that celebrated everyday African-American people.
The Extraordinary Life of a Mediocre Jock introduces us to Flex, a seventh grader who is adequately average in every way, including football. Like many seventh grade boys, he wishes he was a bit more cool, more athletic, and not so awkward around girls. This is published by Harvest House, one of the bigger Christian publishers, and has been quite popular at our libraries!
Serious football fans (including adults) will definitely want to pick up Legends: The Best Players, Games, and Teams in Football . This dive into football history covers the history of the Super Bowl up to XLIX (Seahawks vs. Patriots); interspersed between chapters about each Super Bowl are intriguing top 10 lists and a lengthy timeline.
If you grew up reading sports stories, you probably read books by Matt Christopher; while we still have several books by him, they are admittedly not as popular as they used to be. Those interested in modern sports chapter books should try Jake Maddox; featuring both boys and girls, these high-interest chapter books cover a variety of sports, including swimming, skateboarding, figure skating, and yes, football.
Want more football fun facts? Visit the J 796.332 section for more enticing reads.
Jennifer Schultz, Collection Services Development Librarian, Fauquier County Public Library