Playing for Keeps

by Steven Sandor

A soccer player in a hockey town struggles to fit into his small-town Alberta community

Hockey rules in Branko Stimac's new hometown, where its star players get the royal treatment. Any other sport -- like soccer, where Branko excels -- is considered second-rate. This means the sacrifices Branko's Croatian immigrant father made so he can play in Canada go unnoticed, as does Branko's stellar goalkeeping.

When Branko makes it onto the Edmonton Select team as the second-string keeper, he keeps the accomplishment to himself, sure that no one in his home town will care. But then a video of one of his spectacular saves gets posted on a sports blog and goes viral. Suddenly Branko has more attention than he dreamed of.

About the Author

Steven Sandor
STEVEN SANDOR is a professional sportswriter and magazine editor in Edmonton, Alberta. His articles have appeared in Soccer 360 and Inside Soccer. He also runs The 11, an online soccer magazine, and is the colour commentator for FC Edmonton broadcasts.


"Author Sandor deals with these issues in an appealingly realistic manner"
Lesley Little, Resource Links
"An authentic portrayal of hockey versus soccer along with a convincing immigrant story mark Playing For Keeps as truly Canadian."
Yahong Chi, CM: Canadian Review of Materials
"a short, lively novel... This is a book about an Edmontonian soccer player and it provides an accurate reflection of that community"
Benjamin Massey,


One of the Year's Best for 2012 -- Resource Links

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