|Grades:||5 - 8|
|Guided Reading Level:||T|
8/1/04 VOYA (Voice of Youth Advocates)
The Stanley Cup
The World Cup
Stewart offers two decent additions to this series, focusing these volumes on the greatest championship in each sport, the Stanley Cup of hockey and the World Cup of soccer. The books are similar in design, but because the World Cup occurs only once every four years, the accounts of each championship are longer. Readers learn that players first competed for the Stanley Cup in 1896, making the more than one hundred years of seasons and championships somewhat tiresome here. This reviewer sometimes felt barraged by game scores. For example, Stewart writes of the 1955 Stanley Cup, Montreal battled back in a pair of freely played games, 4-2 and 5-3, to tie the series. Howe dominated in Game Five with three goals in a 5-1 win but Geoffrion was just as good in a 6-3 Montreal victory. The soccer volume is definitely the stronger of the two series books because of its longer focus on each championship run, capturing some of the excitement and flavor of that year.
The photographs in these books are outstanding and the high point of production. Source notes would have added value to these books. They are additional purchases, especially if one's library already owns Hockey: A History (Watts, 1998) and Soccer: A History (Watts, 1998) or other solid resources on the history of these sports. These books, which join other series titles on the Indy 500, the NBA finals, the Super Bowl, and more, will nonetheless have high browse appeal for fans of soccer and hockey, and trivia buffs will eat them up.