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August 11th, 2011

August 12, 2011 — Have you ever read a book only to wish you could ask the author a question about why something happened in the story the way it did? Now you can!

To “kick-off” reading, Here There Everywhere is bringing you Andrea Montalbano , the author of Breakaway a story about a seventh-grade soccer star, named Lily, who learns the hard way that there’s more to life than winning. Being good on the field doesn’t always translate into being a good friend. Will she learn to balance her soccer skills with sportsmanship?

Breakaway is on Scholastic’s Best-Sellers list for April and May and on their recommended summer reading list … and has great reviews!  The Library School Journal recommends this book for grades 5-8.


Andrea Montalbano

Andrea is a soccer star in her own right having captained the Harvard soccer team. So, read the book and she’ll take any questions you have about it. You can submit your questions in the comments box below and we will be posting the answers.

We also have personalized, autographed copies of Breakaway to send to the first 5 people to request it.

Question and Answer with Andrea Montalbano

Nola: Was playing college soccer hard to balance with school work?

Andrea: Yes, it was always a challenge to balance school work and soccer. I went to Harvard where academics came first, and then soccer. We were expected to attend all our labs and classes, even with practices and travel. Our bus trips to away games were mostly spent studying. I actually found it harder in high school when I was on several teams at one time. Often I found myself doing my AP English reading or other homework before school because I was too tired from soccer the night before. But I liked being busy like that!

Piper: Was it hard writing a book?

Andrea : Yes and no. No, because it was a topic that I love with characters who were really easy to write about. Yes, because you have to be really disciplined and do it every day. I would make sure to write in the morning and try to write at least 1,000 words a day — about 5 pages — which might not seem like a lot but is a lot harder than it seems!

Sammie: What inspired you to play soccer?

Andrea: Well, my older brother was on a team and he wanted someone to practice with him and that someone was me! I joined a team at 8 years old, which is later than most kids start now, but was the earliest you could start on the girl’s team (10 and under). I also happened to live on a small island where soccer was basically the only sport available and lucky for me I was pretty good at it. We ended up being Florida State Champions as Under 10’s and that was so exciting I was certainly hooked!

Editorial note : Oh, and yes this is a news site, but its aim is also to engage kids and encourage them to ask questions. One of my favorite perks of working at the Today show was being assigned to read a book … and getting to ask the author all about it!

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