Why are there no books about girls playing football? Why haven’t you written any? These are questions I get asked.
As England Women head to Holland for EURO 2017 with a much better chance of winning a trophy than England men, why is there so little football fiction with girls as the main characters?
This is how I answer.
Well, there are two stand-out series about football featuring girls. The Girls FC series by Helena Pielichaty and the Beautiful Game series by Narinder Dhami.
Both full of excellent stories. Both written by excellent writers. Both out of print.
You can get hold of second hand copies of the two series online. But they are not in the bookshops. And library copies will be getting worn out – because they can’t be replaced with new copies and because they get read.
Girls FC is available on Kindle, which is some comfort.
I have written several too. In brief:
Secret FC is about two girls who set up a football team at their school when they are banned from playing.
My Squad series – made up of Black Op and White Fear – is about five child spies whose cover story is that they are in an elite football team. Two of the five spies (and footballers) are girls.
All three books in my Wings series feature a mixed sex football team. Book three – Typhoon – leads on two sisters who play the game.
You can buy all those books on Amazon here. You can also buy them in lots of other bookshops and borrow them from public libraries.
But what else is there?
Not much. And it is madness. Women’s football is watched more and read about more than ever. Female football is the fastest growing sport in the UK.
When England perform well at EURO 2017 let’s hope the people who make decisions about what sort of books get published are watching.
Please also see the Literacy with the Lionesses toolkit has book lists of well-written fiction and non-fiction featuring girls and women in sport. You can download that for free here.