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This Love Is Not for Cowards

Salvation and Soccer in Ciudad Juárez

Robert Andrew Powell

This book is available for download with iBooks on your Mac or iOS device, and with iTunes on your computer. Books can be read with iBooks on your Mac or iOS device.

Description

More than ten people are murdered every day in Ciudad Juárez, a city about the size of Philadelphia. As Mexico has descended into a feudal narco-state-one where cartels, death squads, the army, and local police all fight over billions of dollars in profits from drug and human trafficking-the border city of Juárez has been hit hardest of all. And yet, more than a million people still live there. They even love their impoverished city, proudly repeating its mantra: "Amor por Juárez."

Nothing exemplifies the spirit and hope of Juarenses more than the Indios, the city's beloved but hard-luck soccer team. Sport may seem a meager distraction, but to many it's a lifeline. It drew charismatic American midfielder Marco Vidal back from Dallas to achieve the athletic dreams of his Mexican father. Team owner Francisco Ibarra and Mayor José Reyes Ferriz both thrive on soccer. So does the dubiously named crew of Indios fans, El Kartel. In this honest, unflinching, and powerful book, Robert Andrew Powell chronicles a season of soccer in this treacherous city just across the Rio Grande, and the moments of pain, longing, and redemption along the way. As he travels across Mexico with the team, Powell reflects on this struggling nation and its watchful neighbor to the north. This story is not just about sports, or even community, but the strength of humanity in a place where chaos reigns.

Publishers Weekly Review

Feb 27, 2012 – What’s it like to live in the “world’s most dangerous city?” Miami native Powell wanted to find out, so he moved to Juarez, Mexico, which, he says, had 2,700 murders in 2009, “the year I got here.” Knowing no one in the city, Powell gravitates to the local soccer team, Indios de Juárez, which is in danger of being relegated to the minors after not long ago inspiring the city with its improbable elevation to the Mexican Primera league. Through the team, Powell (We Own This Game) gets to know a cross-section of Juarez’s population. There is Francisco Ibarra, the enigmatic owner of the Indios, who believes his team can save the city; Marco, the American-born player who ignores the violence in favor of making his sporting dreams come true; and El Kartel, a rowdy bunch of diehard fans who believe in the Indios even though the town around them is crumbling to the ground. Powell’s prose is smart and witty, and betrays a journalist’s keen eye for detail (“Mexico is where American fads go for an encore.... The Blockbuster Video near my apartment remains crowded”). Much like the soccer classic The Miracle of Castel di Sangro by Joe McGinniss, Powell’s work explores not only the connection between an athletic team and its fans but also one city and one community’s ability to simultaneously face conditions that destroy hope and try to restore faith, and in doing so he has written not only a great sports book but also a powerful treatise on civics and human nature.

Customer Reviews

Journalist

This book was a real eye-opener, a story of life in a violent border town a throw-in away from the United States. It uses a doomed professional soccer team and its diehard fans as the vehicle that drives the story. A must-read for not just soccer fans but anyone!

Great read

Excellent book on soccer, culture, violence, corruption, joy, love, and politics. The author immerses himself into the dangerous world of Juarez.

This Love Is Not for Cowards
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  • $11.99
  • Available on iPhone, iPad, iPod touch, and Mac.
  • Category: Social Science
  • Published: Apr 09, 2013
  • Publisher: Bloomsbury USA
  • Seller: INscribe Digital
  • Print Length: 272 Pages
  • Language: English
  • Requirements: To view this book, you must have an iOS device with iBooks 1.3.1 or later and iOS 4.3.3 or later, or a Mac with iBooks 1.0 or later and OS X 10.9 or later.

Customer Ratings