The Floating Field: How a Group of Thai Boys Built Their Own Soccer Field

by Scott Riley (Author) Kim Lien (Illustrator)

The Floating Field: How a Group of Thai Boys Built Their Own Soccer Field
Reading Level: 2nd − 3rd Grade
After watching the World Cup on television, a group of Thai boys is inspired to form their own team. But on the island of Koh Panyee, in a village built on stilts, there is no open space. The boys can play only twice a month on a sandbar when the tide is low enough. Everything changes when the teens join together to build their very own floating soccer field. This inspiring true story by debut author Scott Riley is gorgeously illustrated by Nguyen Quang and Kim Lien. Perfect for fans of stories about sports, beating seemingly impossible odds, and places and cultures not often shown in picture books.

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Kirkus Reviews

An intriguing true story elevated by striking illustrations."—Kirkus Reviews

Publishers Weekly

Starred Review

This real-life celebration of resourcefulness by debut author Riley follows Prasit Hemmin, a boy who, with his friends, found space for a soccer field on the Thai island of Koh Panyee and founded one of the most successful youth soccer clubs in Southern Thailand. Living "in a village on stilts," Hemmin and pals use a sandbar to play when the tide is low. But watching the 1986 FIFA World Cup, they decide to construct a floating platform from scavenged materials to create a less ephemeral field. Working around the field's limitations and forming a football club, they go on to play in a mainland tournament. Illustrations by Vietnamese team Quang and Lien emphasize light, movement, and perspective, making for a transportive read. A compelling book for football fans and readers seeking examples of ingenuity. Back matter includes an author's note, a note from Hemmin, and a glossary of English and Thai soccer terms with pronunciations. Ages 8-9. (Mar.)

Copyright 2021 Publishers Weekly, LLC Used with permission.
Lexile Measure
Guided Reading Level
Publication date
March 20, 2021

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