Sarimah has played soccer in both her home in Syria and then in a Turkish refugee camp, honing her skills there with an old soccer ball on a sandy field with any kids she could find. But when her family suddenly moves to Canada, Sarimah is too busy learning English and getting used to the cold Saskatoon winter to think about her favourite game. She is surprised to find that the kids at her school play soccer in the snow, but she feels clumsy and slow in her winter coat and boots. And she doesn't understand why Tamsen, her classmate and star of the girls league team, has decided she doesn't like Sarimah.
But Sarimah finds that playing soccer in the snow is like playing the game in the sand. Her skills win her a place on the league team, even though Tamsen is convinced that the chance is given to Sarimah as charity. Sarimah has to find out if she has what it takes to play organized soccer on an indoor field, to show Tamsen that she deserves a place on the team, and to learn to love her new home as much as she loves the game.
DAVID TRIFUNOV is an award-winning sportswriter and freelance journalist based in Kelowna, B.C. His work has appeared in newspapers, magazines, and websites across Canada and the United States. He is the author of the Lorimer Sports Stories novels Snow Soccer and Ice Time. When not writing, he's raising three daughters with his wife, Erin.
"This book was an interesting story of a Syrian refugee girl adjusting to life in Canada and bonding with her classmates through soccer. I was glad to see a book in this series about a girl, and also one dealing with a newly arrived refugee."
"The book is about new beginnings, new friends, making opportunities, and finding common ground. All with a background of girl's soccer. A very approachable short middle-grade novel."
"This is a great story for middle grades, especially for reluctant readers ... I think this is a realistic picture of what it is like to be a refugee and would be a great read aloud in a classroom with some great discussions. A good choice for a school or class library."
"A great book for any person who loves learning about new cultures and finding commonality."
"Rated good, even great at times, generally useful!"