(PRWEB) September 26, 2003
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
St. Petersburg, FL (PRWEB) September 26, 2003--ÂSoccer DreamsÂ - a new 92-page book written by Leah Lauber, who followed the U.S. WomenÂs National Soccer Team as a 12-year-old fan and Junior Reporter for the St. Petersburg Times during the history-making 1999 WomenÂs World Cup, has been released by WCI Press.
Leah, today a 16-year-old junior at St. Petersburg Catholic High School, wrote the book four years ago when she had incredible access to her heroes as the Team prepared for, and ultimately won, the WomenÂs World Cup in a tournament widely regarded as a worldwide milestone for womenÂs sports.
With the 2003 WomenÂs World Cup back in the United States, the Lauber family, which has self-published ÂSoccer Dreams,Â believes the book will have great interest to soccer fans of all ages, especially the millions of young soccer players in the United States. Self-publishing became the best option after the family had difficulty generating interest from established publishers.
Playing before 90,185 spectators at the Finals against China, and an international television audience, the 1999 WomenÂs World Cup is especially memorable for its climax -- Brandi ChastainÂs penalty kick sealed the win for the U.S. Team in a thrilling shootout.
Leah attended games, training sessions, and press conferences, recording interviews and comments from nearly every member of the 1999 team. ÂSoccer DreamsÂ describes her adventures from the stands, on the field, in the locker room, and under the press tent. ÂSoccer DreamsÂ is amply illustrated with more than 200 color photos (initially shot by her father, a professional photographer, for the family photo album).
ÂSoccer DreamsÂ is divided into three sections. The first section describes LeahÂs love of the game, her acceptance on the X-Press Team of the St. Petersburg Times, and her initial encounters with the U.S. WomenÂs National Team, including a trip to Atlanta for the Gold Medal game in the 1996 Olympics.
Section Two describes LeahÂs eight-month journey from her first interview with National Team player, Danielle Fotopoulos, at her youth soccer club to the post-Finals Victory Rally in Los Angeles. All five of LeahÂs feature articles in the St. Petersburg Times are also included.
Section Three demonstrates exactly how much access Leah had to her heroes. It includes unedited interviews, comments and quotes from each session Leah was fortunate enough to record. It is a treasure trove of insights - and historical account - in the playersÂ own words.
ÂI am thrilled to see my book in print after I wrote it so long ago,Â Leah said. ÂJust as my heroesÂ dreams came true in 1999, on a much smaller scale, my dream came true as well, being there to witness sports history. Now, with my book in hand, yet another ÂSoccer DreamÂ has come true!Â
While LeahÂs dream of attending the Finals was realized, publishing her book became a four-year unfulfilled vision -- until now.
LeahÂs dad, Chris Lauber, explains, ÂAfter seeing Leah put so much effort into sharing her story, I contacted several publishers. They doubted a 12-year-old could write a book anyone would be interested in reading. When I told them I also had a wide collection of photos to illustrate the book, the conversations came to a quick end. I fully understand why they were doubtful - a 12-year-old author, with her father as the photographer.Â
But, just as LeahÂs adventure four years ago was an unlikely sequence of events, fate stepped in again. The 2003 WomenÂs World Cup was originally scheduled to be played in China, but the SARS epidemic forced FIFA, the international sanctioning body, to pull the tournament from China and stage it once again in the United States.
Recognizing that interest would increase substantially for womenÂs soccer, LeahÂs family decided to self-publish ÂSoccer Dreams.Â With a unique combination of skills and abilities, and the 2003 WomenÂs World Cup to increase interest, the Lauber family explored the possibilities, including the financial commitment.
ÂWe still had our doubts,Â LeahÂs dad said, Âbut one day I was reading Julie FoudyÂs comments in the interview section. She was discussing the people who doubted the staging of the Â99 tournament in a large stadium. Julie said ÂIf they tell you Âyou canÂt,Â just smile, and say Âyou can.Â Take a risk, because risk brings rewards!Â I knew we had to give it our best effort,Â Lauber explained.
Anyone who has ever had a hero - athlete, musician, artist or actor - has dreamed of seeing their hero perform, getting an autograph, and/or talking with them. Leah has enjoyed all those scenarios. What makes ÂSoccer DreamsÂ universally appealing is that her incredible adventure takes place while her National Team of heroes is on the worldÂs largest stage in their home country before the largest audience to witness a womenÂs sporting event in history.
"Soccer Dreams" is available for immediate purchase at the book's website: http://www.SoccerDreamsBook.com or by calling toll-free (888) SOCCER3.