I was so excited to get this book in the mail from my dear friend Holly Michael. This is the book her and her son, Jake Byrne, worked together on. I have been following her on her blog and social media and their progress as they both fulfill the dreams they set out to pursue; she as an author and he as an NFL player. It’s been an amazing journey for both of them. Here is my review of the book…I give it 5 stars…2 thumbs up…and my very own Touch Down Dance!! (yeah…nobody wants to see that). Anniehow…on with the review:
First and Goal
What Football Taught Me About Never Giving Up
by Jake Byrne
At age 14 Jake was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes, he did not let that slow him down, or stop him from pursuing his dreams to play football, all through high school, college and ultimately in the NFL. He shares his triumphs and his struggles in such a heartfelt, real way, that you cannot help but find a nugget in this book to apply to your life as well.
The one thing I noticed is that this book is categorized under Youth Nonfiction, being a mom to 3 boys myself I was thinking how much they would enjoy reading it. But I have to say this book is for anyone facing any type of struggles in their life. It really encouraged me personally. As a football fan, I enjoyed how the book was set up with the different football terms being defined, and then using those examples with life experiences. If you’re not a football fan, you will not get lost in the jargon. What I think I enjoyed most were Jake’s life stories, the fun antics he describes with his siblings and friends. This tells me that he has a full life filled with love from family and friends, but it does not overshadow the love he has for God; that shines through as he encourages his reader to look to God for strength to help them through whatever they struggle with.
I found it so fitting that his mom, Holly Michael’s, contribution is under the Extra Point category. This brief jog down memory lane completes the book in such a way that I now understand why whenever the camera zooms in on any football player on the sidelines, the first thing they say is “Hi Mom.” Because it is the prayers and pure love of a mom that strengthened and encouraged him as he worked diligently to get to where he is today.
This is a great read for anyone, especially our young people who face so many obstacles on a daily basis. If you click on the picture above, it will take you to Amazon where you can order the book yourself, you won’t be disappointed…you might even be encouraged!! 🙂
If you know of anyone who is living with type 1 diabetes, you can direct them to Jake’s Type Won Facebook page.