Defending Irene

Irene loves soccer, and, back in Missouri, she was one of the top players on her school’s girls’ team. But things are different in Merano, Italy.
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  • ISBN: 9781561453092
  • Publication date: 04/01/2004
  • Page Count: 224
  • Size: 6" x 9"
  • Age Range: 8-12
  • Price:
  • Age Range: 8-12
  • Price:
  • Age Range: 8-12
  • Price:
  • ISBN: 9781561458714
  • Publication date: 03/01/2016
  • Page Count: N/A
  • Age Range: 8-12
  • Price:
  • Age Range: 8-12
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Description

Irene loves soccer, and, back in Missouri, she was one of the top players on her school’s girls’ team. But things are different in Merano, Italy.

Irene loves the feel of the ball exploding off her foot for a shot at the goal, but in the small, very traditional Alpine town in Italy where Irene and her family have come for a yearlong stay, there is no soccer team for girls.

When Irene decides to join the highly competitive boys’ team, she has little idea what she’s getting herself into. She must prove herself to the strict coach, and her teammates make it clear they don’t want her on the field. Especially Matteo, the team’s star player, who goes out of his way to make Irene unwelcome. But Irene does not give up easily.

With an often humorous look at a collision of cultures, Kristin Wolden Nitz has created a complex adolescent character whom readers will root for as she struggles to find her place in a new country and on the field.

Author/Illustrator

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Kristin Wolden Nitz

Author

Kristin Wolden Nitz is an avid sports fan, coach, and the author of many magazine articles on kids and sports. Nitz is the author of Suspect and Defending Irene, and has also written nonfiction books, including Play By Play Softball, Play By Play Track, and Play By Play Field. She lives in Michigan.

Reviews

“What keeps this tale from being just another soccer story with play-by-play action is the unique setting; the inventiveness of the chapter headings, which consist of Italian words, pronunciations, and definitions; and Irene’s determination.” ―School Library Journal

“Soccer fans, especially girls, will appreciate the well-drawn action sequences and Irene’s feisty spirit.” ―The Horn Book Guide

Awards

Young Adult Top Forty ―Pennsylvania School Librarians Association, 2005

More Details

AR Level: 3.9
F&P: GRL U, Gr 5, Genre RF
Themes: Determination, Gender, Italy, Perseverance, Soccer
BISAC 1: JUV032150 JUVENILE FICTION / Sports & Recreation / Soccer
BISAC 2: JUV030050 JUVENILE FICTION / People & Places / Europe
BISAC 3: JUV041000 JUVENILE FICTION /Girls & Women

Books By Kristin Wolden Nitz