Audience: YA Contemporary + Romance
Length: 350 pages
Author: Yamile Saied Méndez
Publisher: Algonquin Young Readers
Release Date: September 15th, 2020
Image & Other Reviews on: Goodreads
An #ownvoices contemporary YA set in Argentina, about a rising soccer star who must put everything on the line—even her blooming love story—to follow her dreams.
In Rosario, Argentina, Camila Hassan lives a double life.
At home, she is a careful daughter, living within her mother’s narrow expectations, in her rising-soccer-star brother’s shadow, and under the abusive rule of her short-tempered father.
On the field, she is La Furia, a powerhouse of skill and talent. When her team qualifies for the South American tournament, Camila gets the chance to see just how far those talents can take her. In her wildest dreams, she’d get an athletic scholarship to a North American university.
But the path ahead isn’t easy. Her parents don’t know about her passion. They wouldn’t allow a girl to play fútbol—and she needs their permission to go any farther. And the boy she once loved is back in town. Since he left, Diego has become an international star, playing in Italy for the renowned team Juventus. Camila doesn’t have time to be distracted by her feelings for him. Things aren’t the same as when he left: she has her own passions and ambitions now, and La Furia cannot be denied. As her life becomes more complicated, Camila is forced to face her secrets and make her way in a world with no place for the dreams and ambition of a girl like her.
Wow did this book hit me. It was amazing. I love a great sports book and this ranks up there.
Furia covered so many topics. Camila is immersed in a world where she isn’t as valued as she should be. Wanting to play soccer, fall in love, and escape from her situation. She was incredibly strong and I love her passionate nature. Camila had resiliency that brought me to tears and I felt like this book taught me a lot too.
Getting into a deep dive of Argentina and the way that soccer is tied to many lives and the issues that continually plague the country was intense. Reading about missing and murdered girls and domestic abuse were tough subjects to cross but I love how Méndez approached it all. And I love how Camila and her mother were able to lean on each other. When Camila brought up breaking the [domestic abuse] cycle it was powerful.
The little romance was so sweet. A bit of second chance + childhood friends. I wish the ending didn’t feel so rushed with the romance and everything else that had happened. I wanted a little more epilogue-ish rundown of how Camila’s family was doing, etc. I do love that Camila’s love of soccer and wanting to continue to play was clearly the forfront of the story. Besides the hurried ending I did love where Camila ended up.
A book that will easily resonate with many. I can’t recommend this enough. The audio was great too if you’re interested in reading it in that format!
Overall audience notes:
- YA Contemporary + Romance
- Language: some
- Romance: kisses/make-outs
- Trigger/Content Warnings: domestic abuse (physical, verbal & emotional), teen pregnancy, mentions of kidnappings and murder of young girls