The Match by Russell Ayto

The Match

Written by Russell Ayto
Illustrated by Russell Ayto

3+ readers   5+ readers   World Cup 2018   
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The Lovereading4Kids comment

Told in single words, and through grey pencil illustrations on an admittedly startling green background, this story encompasses anticipation, disappointment, despair, resignation … then hope, surprise and utter joy! A man and his dog lead uneventful lives: one works in a factory, same thing every day, the other looks after the house (ditto). On match days, they watch the game from their sofa, dinner on their knees, and it’s always the same too: Ball. Kicking. Whistle. Blowing. Penalty. Missing. Defeat. Repeat. Until … the man finds himself watching the match alone, and a surprise substitute is brought on to score an amazing goal! The life of a fan is summed up in 32 wonderful pages, this could be one of the best books about football ever. ~ Andrea Reece


The Match by Russell Ayto

The perfect gift for all those whose lives revolve around The Beautiful Game ... The man works all week in the factory. The dog waits at home. On the weekend, they both watch THE MATCH on television together. Results aren't good so the dog decides to do something about it ... With a knowing, dry humour perfect for fans of Wallace & Gromit, and a simple domestic setting, THE MATCH is the ideal gift for all football fans. Because if you aren't watching football, then reading about it is the next best thing!

About the Author

Russell Ayto is best known for his anarchic and stylish artwork. He graduated from Exeter College of Art with a degree in Graphic Design and has since been delighting children all over the world. He won the Gold Smarties Award in 2003 for The Witch's Children, and the Roald Dahl Funny Prize in 2008 for The Witch's Children Go to School. He has been shortlisted for the Kate Greenaway Medal twice. Before illustrating children's books, he worked for various magazines including Time Out and the Sunday Observer. The Match is Russell's second book with Bloomsbury, following the brilliant Henry and the Yeti. Russell lives in Cornwall with his family.

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Book Info




Russell Ayto
More books by Russell Ayto


Bloomsbury Publishing PLC

Publication date

3rd May 2018




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