Top Of The League by Andrea Mills

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Top Of The League by Andrea Mills

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Category: Children's Non-Fiction
Rating: 3.5/5
Reviewer: Sam Tyler
Reviewed by Sam Tyler
Summary: Hundreds of football facts and figures splashed over 64 pages of eye popping colour. A useful tool to get the young football fan to pick up a book, but does it also educate?
Buy? Maybe Borrow? Yes
Pages: 64 Date: April 2016
Publisher: QED Publishing
ISBN: 9781784934576

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Football is known as the beautiful game and when I was younger I kind of believed this. I would spend my free time playing Heads and Volleys with my mates and then go home to try and complete my Panini sticker album. There was even the halcyon days when Blackburn Rovers won the title. As I have grown older, my cynicism has grown too. Leicester may be champions, but the day I feel that a group of multimillionaires beating a group of slightly richer multimillionaires is a win for the everyman, will be a sad one. Perhaps the love of football still burns bright in the youth of today? Top Of the League certainly hopes so as it is full of facts and figures all about the ball they call foot.

Top is the type of non-fiction book designed for the easily distracted 7-11 year old who is perhaps not a fan of conventional books. Over the 64 pages included you get a cornucopia of pictures and colours, as well as more football facts that you could wave a red card at. Each two page spread or so has a different theme that looks at an area; top scorers, earners, richest, most successful. There is a leaning slightly towards the more modern era of the game as it is the Messis and the Ronaldos that attract the youngsters, but at least there is some lip service played to an era before the Premiership existed.

As an adult reading it I found the pages all a little cluttered, Andrea Mills has worked with a page designer who thinks that more is more. Splashed across the page are nice full colour photos, but they really do dazzle the eyes at times. When watching a young reading-shy football fan with the book, this seemed to have the opposite effect. They liked the fact that it was full of small fact blasts that they could pick up and read, then put the book down again.

This is a fact book that does attract the young football fan, but perhaps glories a little too much in the modern side of the game – the money and the glamour. There is something to be said about a book that is full of dinosaur or animal facts; you feel as if the child is learning something. Here they will learn, but it is likely to be the number of goals that the Barcelona team scored in the 2014/15 season. As a way of getting a reluctant reader to pick up a book there is certainly merit here, but a little more education would have not gone amiss in a book that can feel like an explosion for the eyes.

Keeping up the theme of getting football fans to put down their balls and pick up a book, this long running series could help Captain Fantastic (Football Academy) by Tom Palmer. For a more in-depth fact book try Ultimate Reptileopedia by Christina Wilsdon.

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Buy Top Of The League by Andrea Mills at Amazon You can read more book reviews or buy Top Of The League by Andrea Mills at Amazon currently charges £2.99 for standard delivery for orders under £20, over which delivery is free.
Buy Top Of The League by Andrea Mills at Amazon You can read more book reviews or buy Top Of The League by Andrea Mills at


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