Every now and again a book comes along which wonderfully describes the idiosyncrasies and experiences associated with being a football fan – Written In The Stars by Richard Stokoe fits into that category.
The main focus of the book however, begins in the second chapter as the search for a new manager ahead of the 2012/13 season commences. Thereinafter Evans presents the reader with what is in essence a ‘diary of a season’ format as Caernarfon seek promotion from the third tier of the Welsh football pyramid and compete in a myriad of cup competitions. Without providing too much of a spoiler, the book comes to record a season that “will forever be remembered as the campaign in which Caernarfon Town finally regained its pride.”
Another offering from Amberley books in their expanding football series, Fifty Defining Fixtures. This edition by Steve Tongue focuses on David Beckham. Beckham has come to transcend the game of football where he initially made his name, but in the Introduction, Tongue is clear on the direction of this book; “the focus here is on Beckham the footballer and the most memorable of his 800-plus matches”, adding, “selecting fifty games is not easy and cannot be definitive.”
The book does indeed detail the history of Leeds City, from 1904 until its expulsion from the Football League during the 1919/20 season and then picks up the story of the birth of Leeds United from 1919 to the present day, including the glory years under Don Revie to the chaos of the Cellino reign. However, given that the book extends to just 159 pages, it means that it would be more fair to consider the book a concise history of the club, since some seasons are detailed in a couple of paragraphs, indeed 1993/94 is covered in just five lines.
The ‘diary of a season’ format has become a popular outlet for football fans making their mark in the literary world. In general they are published shortly after the end of a season, so it was something of a break with tradition and surprise to receive a request to review a book written in the main during 2014, published in 2015, and which reflects on events 5 to 6 years ago.