Interest LevelReading LevelReading A-ZATOSWord Count
Grades 7 - 12Grades 2 - 3n/an/an/a
For every athlete or sports fanatic who knows she's just as good as the guys. This is for fans of The Running Dream by Wendelin Van Draanen, Grace, Gold, and Glory by Gabrielle Douglass and Breakaway: Beyond the Goal by Alex Morgan.

The summer before Caleb and Tessa enter high school, friendship has blossomed into a relationship . . . and their playful sports days are coming to an end. Caleb is getting ready to try out for the football team, and Tessa is training for cross-country.

But all their structured plans derail in the final flag game when they lose. Tessa doesn’t want to end her career as a loser. She really enjoys playing, and if she’s being honest, she likes it even more than running cross-country. So what if she decided to play football instead? What would happen between her and Caleb? Or between her two best friends, who are counting on her to try out for cross-country with them? And will her parents be upset that she’s decided to take her hobby to the next level? This summer Caleb and Tessa figure out just what it means to be a boyfriend, girlfriend, teammate, best friend, and someone worth cheering for.

“A great next choice for readers who have enjoyed Catherine Gilbert Murdock’s Dairy Queen and Miranda Kenneally’s Catching Jordan.”—SLJ

Fast-paced football action, realistic family drama, and sweet romance…[will have] readers looking for girl-powered sports stories…find[ing] plenty to like.”—Booklist

“Tessa's ferocious competitiveness is appealing.”—Kirkus Reviews

“[The Football Girl] serve[s] to illuminate the appropriately complicated emotions both of a young romance and of pursuing a dream. Heldring writes with insight and restraint.”—The Horn Book
Hardcover, 208 pages
Published on April 4, 2017 by Delacorte Press
ISBN-10: 0385741839
ISBN-13: 9780385741835
1 Book Review
  • kylrow1718
    kylrow1718about 5 years55 stars
    Has someone ever judged you because you want to do something? You should always follow your heart no matter what people say. If yes then you should read the book The Football Girl by: Thatcher Heldring. The book is based in Pilchuck, Washington. The antagonist in the book is named Tessa Dooley and the protagonist is Caleb. Tessa and her friends do cross country till Tessa meets a new friend name Caleb who plays flag football and then they start playing flag football together. Then there starts to be judgement from Caleb and his friends. Now that it's the summer of ninth grade Tessa is debating whether to continue to do cross country with friends or do football with Caleb. If you want to know more you should read the book The Football Girl by: Thatcher Heldring. I Recommend this book to someone who is sixth grade and up and who like sports or people that believe you should always follow your heart.