‘Dad, why can’t I play soccer?’
Jake imagined running down the pitch, super-fast and much too tricky for other players. He’d fire the ball at goal like a cannon.
Jake wants to join the soccer team with Jonah his mate. Dad takes him to buy soccer boots and Jake chooses silver ones, sure they will be perfect. But the reality of the game and his skills doesn’t come close to matching the playing he can do in his imagination. The gloss goes off the boots and his enthusiasm. Everyone reminds him that it takes practice to be good at anything, and all his family help him with that. Still, he sees his friend Jonah getting better much faster than him. He tries and tries and tries. When it comes to game time, Jonah discovers that there are skills he has developed that make him ideal for a special role. Illustrations are pencil sketches, on every spread.
Jake is back in a fourth book about his life and adventures. In ‘Jake’s Great Game’ he realises that reality doesn’t always match fantasy when it comes to playing soccer. But he does discover the value of practice. Along the way to the first game, he experiences great frustration at his apparent inability to improve. He does discover he’s better than his father though in their first park play! And he also realises that Nana is a much better player than he could ever have imagined. He persists, practises and sees the rewards for that effort in his first game. When he begins, he sees only the glory and the shiny shoes, but by the end, he’s learned about playing a team sport. Recommended for newly independent readers.
Jake’s Great Game, Ken Spillman
Fremantle Press 2011
This book can be purchased online from Fishpond.