David Harding and Izzy Folau, Standing Tall (Izzy Folau #4), Random House Australia, 1 Sept 2015, 176pp., $14.99 (pbk), ISBN: 9780857986672
Standing Tall is the fourth book in the Izzy Folau series, written by David Harding and Rugby star Israel Folau. The idea of a sportsperson as a literary role-model for children is not new but it’s a terrific idea and these stories will resonate with kids keen on football or interested in sportsmanship. There are morals aplenty here, with simple yet strong messages about training hard, being a team player, the ethics of playing fairly, the importance of honesty and humility.
Standing Tall sees the team travelling to Sydney to play in the much-anticipated State Championships. The main characters, Daniel and Sione, face personal challenges as well as dealing with some difficult opposition players, which are all resolved tidily and many lessons are learned.
The storylines are broken up with play-by-play game details, which I found a little tedious, however I’m sure young footy fans will enjoy this engaging and easy-to-read series.
Reviewed by Amanda Tarlau