BooksforTopics Reading for Pleasure Recommendations
Book Title: Jaz Santos Vs The World (available here)
Author: Priscilla Mante
Publication Date: May 2021
Most Suitable for: Years 4-6
Jaz Santos vs the World is the first in a new series about a girl who gathers an unlikely group of friends together to make their own girls’ football team. This is an inclusive and empowering tale with a real-life feel that will appeal to fans of Cath Howe and Jacqueline Wilson.
Circumstances in Jaz’s life are starting to feel out of control. She has been in trouble at school, kicked out of dance club and is dealing with the growing cracks in her parents’ relationship, culminating in a house fire and her mum eventually moving out. There’s more on her mind too – Jaz loves football and often plays with the boys at lunchtimes, but is excluded from the school team because girls are not allowed to play.
When Jaz finds a leaflet advertising a girls’ football tournament, she seizes the opportunity to take back some control. Thinking carefully about how to sell the idea to her classmates, Jaz pours heart and soul into rallying a team of girls to prepare for the tournament. From fundraising to training, Jaz leaves no stone unturned – with her passionate hopes of proving that girls can be taken seriously in football matched only by her desire to get mum back. Deep down, Jaz wonders whether winning the tournament might magically solve all of the other problems in her life too, but some wise words along the way help Jaz to understand that life’s circumstances do not have to define her, and her own personal successes and failures don’t have to be tied up with the things in life that are simply beyond her control.
With a summer of football fever on its way and girls’ football growing more popular than ever, this is an empowering book with a dynamic and entertaining main character who shows what can happen when somebody leads the way in a new sporting initiative. The discrimination against Jaz as a girl wanting to be taken seriously in football (from both adults and children) feels frustrating and unfair, but Jaz is passionate and triumphant to show what can be achieved with a little determination. Some of the other girls have no interest in the sport before Jaz recruits them to the team, but the story shows how beneficial the opportunity to join in is for them each in different ways. The author Priscilla Mante says of the book, “Girls’ football and women’s football don’t get the attention they should do and it was really important for me, through Jaz, to challenge the status quo.”
This timely and heart-warming story about teamwork, self-belief and following your passions in the face of life’s ups and downs is likely to score big with readers aged 8-11.
Thanks to the publishers at Puffin, we have a copy of Jaz Santos Vs The World to give away to one of our followers.
There are 2 ways to enter:
1. Twitter entry: To enter, follow @booksfortopics and RT the giveaway tweet.
2. Instagram entry – Follow @booksfortopics on Instagram & TAG in the giveaway post’s comments a friend who may also like to win this book for their home or school library.
You can enter both ways for two entries! Giveaway opens on the evening of Sun 13th June and closes 11.59pm 19th June 2021 (UK) — terms and conditions here.
Many thanks to the publishers for sending us a review copy. Follow along with the other stops on the blog tour for more about the book.
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