Hello Bookish friends,

Today, I am reviewing a powerful moving book,

that I absolutely enjoyed reading it.

Black & Blue: Love, Sport and the Art of Empowerment

by Andra Douglas

Date Published: July 2019
Publisher:  BookBaby
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Have you ever wanted to do something that everyone said was impossible? Then you’ll love BLACK & BLUE. Loosely based on the author’s own life, this coming-of-age novel will inspire you to pursue your dreams.

For as long as she can remember, “Toady” wanted nothing more than to play football.  But for Toady, the love of football is bittersweet – because Toady’s given name is Christine. She’s a girl, and girls “can’t” play football. Despite her exceptional abilities, she watches bitterly as the boys play on the high school team and win scholarships.  Reluctantly, she gives up her football dreams and moves to New York City – where she finds that life is full of surprises. Christine hears about a group of women playing flag football, and she joins their game. The players are so good that before long, they’re invited to become part of a professional women’s tackle league.
For Christine, this is the chance she’s always dreamed of. Not only does she play football, but she raises enough money to become the team’s owner. But that’s when the real challenges begin. Does Christine have the guts and the stamina to spite the odds? BLACK & BLUE will leave readers cheering as Christine doubles down to fight for her dreams and for the women who want nothing more than to play their favorite sport. If you loved Bend It Like Beckham or A League of Their Own, you’ll adore BLACK & BLUE.

This book was received from the Author, and Publisher, in exchange for an honest review. Opinions and thoughts expressed in this review are completely my own

Have you listened to your inner voice and followed your lifelong


What if you had a dream to be, or do something, and everything and everyone was against you.

Black & Blue: Love, Sport and the Art of Empowerment, by Andra Douglas, is a compelling read from beginning to end a by Andra Douglas, partly sports fiction, but also reads like amemoir.

A powerful moving book, about a woman who in the the face of adversity followed her lifelong passion for football. She refuses to accept the roles cast on her by her birth gender and growing up in the deep American South.

“I grew up in the South. The freedom the South offers to its males is a singular experience. Gaining this freedom is a game of sorts… Football is the southern males’ identity.”

“Had I been born a male, things would have been different… the South would have engulfed me, seduced me and made me a child of its own. As a female, it still engulfed me, still seduced me, but then betrayed me as lovers do who end up bitter, never repairing the scars of trust gone awry.”

Christine, “Toady” came from a family of three girls and her sisters were your typical girly-girls while she had an inner calling to be something more diverse. She was tomboyish by nature. Christine loved football, she passionate, maybe a little obsessed with it. She wanted to be accepted by her peers, even early on in her younger.

She struggled and improved despite everything to be accepted by the neighborhood boys and to actually play football with them.

Toady, is from Zephyrhills, Florida, and football is a huge pastime. With lots devotion and practice she excels at football. Even though she is probably better than a lot of guys, she is denied a spot on the high school team. Her Senior year, she watches unhappily as her male classmates win college football scholarships.

Toady’s family are devote Florida State University, FSU football fans. So, it was decided early on that all the girls in her family would attend FSU university.

Upon graduation from High School,she leaves the south far behind and their notion of what is suitable for young women. She attends Pratt Institue, And pursues her love of Art in New York City. While still harboring her love of the game of football.

When the unexpected chance opportunity to finally play tackle football comes along, she jumps at it. In a series of events Christine buys an all women’s football team.

The Organizing and searching for players, coaches and locations and other teams to play against is a daunting task considering all the obstacles that she is faced to be taken serious within In all male dominating sport. She rices as quarterback and owner for the women’s professional football team the New York Sharks.When unforeseen circumstances happen, and Christine is faced with challenges, she most re-examine herself.

The authors writing flows seamlessly and the well developed characters come to life with this exceptional storyline.

This is an astonishing coming of age book that is a most read for anyone. A deeply moving, powerful book about the injustice still placed on girls and woman, and over coming adversity.

I raised both of my daughters to be strong powerful woman. While reading this book I had a flashback of my oldest daughter in ROTC In high school. The guys were starting a game of touch football, and my daughter asked if she could play. I think they laughed and said why not.

So all the parents were standing by at this ROTC function watching are children play. One lady asked if I was actually going to let my daughter play, and if I was worried for her safety. I answered her back by saying I was hoping she wouldn’t hurt some of the smaller boys because they stopped playing touch and it had advanced to tackle football.

About the Author
ANDRA DOUGLAS is a native of central Florida and a graduate of Florida State University and Pratt Institute.  A national champion athlete in rugby and women’s tackle football, she was the owner of the New York Sharks Women’s Pro Football team for nineteen years and is the founder of the Fins Up! Foundation for Female Athletes, a non-profit to benefit at-risk teens.  In addition to her love of football, Andra is a professional artist and served as a Vice President/Creative Director at Time Warner for many years. Today, she lives with her parrot, ‘Pie’ in New York’s Greenwich Village where she creates mixed-media artwork.  To learn more, visit: http://www.andradouglasart.com.
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