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In the tradition of Buzz Bissinger’s Friday Night Lights, a sensitive and clear-eyed journalist takes us deep inside Oregon’s only all-Hispanic boys’ high school soccer team, a team whose players stand on the cusp of change.
The all-Hispanic boys’ soccer team from Woodburn High has made the playoffs for nineteen straight years--but they’ve never won a championship. As they prepare to make it twenty, one thing will become clear: Los Perros play the beautiful game with heart, pride, and their lives on the line. More than just riveting sports writing, The Boys from Little Mexico is about the fight for the future of the next generation--and a hard, true look at boys dismissed as gang-bangers, told to “go home” by lily-white sideline crowds. The wins and losses they notch along the way spin a striking tale about what it takes to capture the American Dream.
“In The Boys from Little Mexico, Steve Wilson does more than chase the American Dream–he captures it on the move. Wilson provides us with a glimpse of the future of sports in America, one that promises to be as rich and compelling as the past.”–Glenn Stout, author and Series Editor of The Best American Sports Writing
“Just as Buzz Bissinger did in Friday Night Lights, Steve Wilson manages to achieve the unexpected: a book about sports that turns out to be about so much more. He wrests poetry out of these boys’ lives, while aiming directly for that one destination where we all seek home–the heart.”–Luis Alberto Urrea, author of Into the Beautiful North and The Devil’s Highway
“With compassion and an unflinching eye, Steve Wilson offers us through sports a preview of a new America, one whose people may look different, but whose virtues of what we like to believe in ourselves remain triumphantly the same.”–Howard Bryant, ESPN senior writer and author of The Last Hero
“The Boys from Little Mexico proves once again that the language of sports is universal. Steve Wilson takes a small corner of the world and shows how big it can be, especially when a caring coach partners with some talented players. This book is both heartbreaking and inspiring.”–Madeleine Blais, author of In These Girls, Hope Is a Muscle
“The Boys from Little Mexico is an unvarnished and moving account of the dreams and despair of immigrant boys on a high school soccer team who struggle not only in their quest to win the state championship, but also in their desire to adapt as strangers in a new land. If you want to understand your new next-door neighbors, this is the book to read.”–Sonia Nazario, author of Enrique’s Journey
“Steve Wilson’s reporting is deep and true, clear and, at times, heartbreaking. These boys come alive on the page.”–David Maraniss, author of Clemente and When Pride Still Mattered