Head to Head

by Jennifer Manuel

A young teen girl learns to overcome her rivalry with a soccer teammate so they can lead the team together.

With characters who display diversity in ethnicity and leadership style, Head to Head is based in Victoria, British Columbia, and focuses on empowering girls to work together and develop leadership qualities. Readers will instantly recognize the struggle of dealing with someone they don't get along with as main character Emika struggles to connect with her co-captain on the soccer team named Maram. Rather than portraying others as inherently difficult and avoidable, Head to Head instead illuminates healthy relationships and teamwork, particularly for young girls.

About the Author

JENNIFER MANUEL was the 2017 winner of the Ethel Wilson Fiction Prize and was named A Writer to Watch by the CBC in 2016. Jennifer teaches elementary and high school in the traditional territory of the Nuu-chah-nulth peoples, where she coaches the youth basketball team. She also plays goalie in a men's hockey league. Jennifer is the author of Dressed to Play in the Lorimer Sports Stories series. Jennifer lives in Duncan, British Columbia.

Reviews

"Manuel’s characters display diversity in both ethnicity and leadership style and must struggle with dealing with someone they don’t normally get along with. The book illustrates healthy relationships and teamwork throughout."

Valerie Green, The British Columbia Review

"A good read about teamsmanship, fair play and winners and losers. Highly recommended."

CM: Canadian Review of Materials

"Features a diverse cast of characters, including one with cerebral palsy, and the book celebrates confident girls in sports."

School Library Journal

Awards

Red Cedar Book Award
2021

Subjects (BISAC)

Subjects

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