By Shawn Stein (Span'98)
(Freight Books, 224 pages; 2016)
Idols and Underdogs: An anthology of Latin American football fiction is a collection of 11 stories from each country in the South American World Cup qualifying group, plus Mexico. It includes some of the most prestigious names in Latin American literature. A hymn to the jogo bonito, these short stories demonstrate, in stark contrast to its European counterpart, just how connected Latin American football is to its roots in the backstreets, barrios and favelas. Idols and Underdogs is an English translation of Por amor a la pelota: once cracks de la ficción futbolera.