Kid’s Book Review: Our Beautiful Game

Kid’s Book Review: Our Beautiful Game

About the Book and Author

This is an unusual story set a century ago at a time when it was not socially acceptable for women to play football. It is not just about the sport this book offers insight into what life was like at home for women during the First World War. Our young reviewer loved this story inspired by real women that has been written by Lou Kuenzler and published by Faber. Please keep scrolling down to read 12-year old Becky’s carefully considered and glowing review.

As men were sent to fight in the war, women and girls took their place in munitions factories. Football became a favourite pastime and, before long, they were creating all-female sides and playing public matches to sell-out crowds, overshadowing the men’s football. Despite drawing crowds of 50,000, women’s football was outlawed by the Football Association in 1921, who deemed it ‘unsuitable for females’.
This is the incredible story of the amazing women who defied the authorities.

Our Beautiful Game
Lou Kuenzler

Lou Kuenzler is the author of a LOT of books for children, including My Digger is Bigger, Eat Your People, the Shrinking Violet series, the Princess DisGrace series, the Bella Broomstick series and Not Yet, Zebra.

Book Review

I loved how in Our Beautiful Game the characters are based on real women who pioneered women’s football all over the world

I do not particularly like sports especially football so when I read the blurb of this book and it told me that one of it’s main themes, maybe its most featured theme, is football I was sceptical, but interested. I’ve heard about how revolutionary women’s football was but had never read about the subject or found out about it. But Our Beautiful Game by Lou Kuenzler showed me how brave and determined those first women were. This book is about the first professional women’s football teams in Britain during World War 1. Brave is probably not a word many would associate with football during World War 1 and of course there were so many brave and heroic men and women on the battle field we cannot forget, but these women were faced with hate and disgust wherever they went. So for them to be the first women ever to play professional football must have been so scary.

Earlier I said that football wasn’t the only main theme in this brilliant book, and that is because I think feminism and women’s roles and rights are just as huge a part of this book, on and off the football field. In the background is obviously the suffrage movement even though Lou Kuenzler doesn’t mention the suffragettes. This book isn’t about that side of politics. It is more about simple rights and about the political right of women to play football. If these women were not filled with love for football but also with the frustration of being placed second all their lives, they would not have succeeded. They all broke through the barriers and restrictions of being a woman at this time and showed everyone what they could do.

Another key theme is of course World War 1. It shows how the war affected the home front as well as the front line. How women were invaluable to the war effort. This book focuses on the munitionettes and football teams from their factories. Munitionettes were revolutionary even when you discount the football. They wore trousers in the factories which was unheard of before the great war. Our Beautiful Game also focuses on the lives lost on the home front due to the war, and teaches a lot about those strong women.

I loved how in Our Beautiful Game the characters are based on real women who pioneered women’s football all over the world. It gives you a sense of who they were and lets them live on in the minds of girls and boys today in a creative way. It really recognises those women who don’t deserve to be forgotten even though society shunned them.

I would really recommend Our Beautiful Game by Lou Kuenzler, it is an absolutely brilliant book and I loved it.

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Reviewer Profile

Becky
  • Name: Becky
  • Age: 12 Years
  • Likes: walking my dog, pizza, playing music
  • Dislikes: marmalade and playing Monopoly!
  • Favourite Book: The Penderwicks series by Jeanne Birdsall
  • Favourite Song: Piano Man by Billy Joel
  • Favourite Film: Seven Brides for Seven Brothers