Little People, Big Dreams: Megan Rapinoe; Maria Isabel Sánchez Vegara, illustrated by Paulina Morgan
Until the 2019 Women’s Football World Cup I had never heard of the name Megan Rapinoe. And then she burst onto my radar for many reasons; her football talent, her colourful hair and her honest and outspoken views.
From an early age Megan loved sport. Whilst her classmates were chasing the boys, Megan was chasing footballs and dreams of football stardom. Megan’s footballing journey would see her go from a young child playing ball sports with her siblings to playing football while at Junior high before getting a college scholarship which ultimately led to professional contracts that would see her play in three different continents
Her hard work, determination and talent led to many successes on the pitch - winning numerous trophies including Olympic gold, the World Cup and personal accolades for the scoring the most goals at a tournament and being the tournament’s stand-out player.
Megan’s talents went beyond the football pitch and I love her honest views. Being a gay athlete is something that has often been discussed in the media and it is something that many athletes choose to keep to themselves but Megan wanted the world to know that she liked women and wanted to be an example to other athletes. This is such a wonderful message to young children - be comfortable with who you are and celebrate it. Even as a child Megan knew she was a bit different from the other girls - she preferred to dress differently and wear her hair in a different style - but she didn’t shy away from these differences, she embraced them because Megan knew, “There were lots of ways to be a girl.”
Megan worked tirelessly both and off the field. Whilst she was winning on the field she was also winning off the field too. She has passionately spoken about seeing equality for men and women in sport and set up a football camp for children where they could have fun and work hard, just like she had done when she was young.
Megan Rapinoe is a true inspiration to young children and gives all the right messages. Adults often tell children to follow their dreams and to be proud of who they are but at times it may feel that these words are simply being said without conviction. Rapinoe is the proof that children need; the words mean something and are one hundred per cent true and achievable.
Delightfully illustrated with bright and bold artwork and with a story told in short and simple sentences, this is a great read for aspiring athletes. At the back of the the book there is a short overview of her life so far which includes key facts and dates and a historical timeline featuring photographs.
Recommended for 5+.
Due for publication on 2nd February 2021. With thanks to Netgalley and Frances Lincoln Publishers for the ARC.