Guest post by Henry Young.

Football is coming to the library! Football, and … Christmas!

The stars of the acclaimed podcast, The Price of Football, are coming to Hastings Library this December, a podcast which follows the money behind the beautiful game.

Join comedian (and financial idiot) Kevin Day (Have I Got News For You & Match of The Day) and financial expert Kieran Maguire as they talk about the big stories from the world of football finance and answer audience questions.

It’s Gary Lineker and Adrain Chiles’s favourite podcast!

And of course, there’s something for everyone at your local library this Christmas!

You might think of your library as a calm, cosy relaxing environment packed with fascinating, educational, and inspiring books – and you’d be right – but there’s so much more going on, and this Christmas is no exception. We have great events and activities taking place over the festive period. Enjoy a seasonal crafting session or settle down with your little ones to hear a Christmas story and rhyme time, there is plenty on offer.

This month we have handed over to football fan Jack (from the library) to choose reads inspired by his beloved game.

Book cover for 'A Kestrel for a Knave' by Barry Hines. Top Adult Fiction

A Kestrel for a Knave

by Barry Hines

This is the unsentimental story of the remarkable relationship between the desperate Billy, a friendless boy living in a soulless northern town, and the equally destructive, fierce kestrel, Kes, which he raises from the nest.

The poet Ian McMillan has praised the novel as Yorkshire’s “Moby-Dick, our Things Fall Apart, our Great Gatsby.”

It is famous for its 20 page football match, a portrait of a games teacher – every awful games teacher ever! – fanatical about the game and using the pupils as extras in his fantasy, and Billy – who hates football, with no kit, forced to wear ill-fitting shorts and be goalie.

Reserve the pBook


 Book cover for 'Unfit and Proper Persons: An Idiot's Guide to Owning a Football Club' by Kevin Day, Kieran Maguire, Guy Kilty.Top Non Fiction

Unfit and Improper Persons: An Idiot’s Guide to Owning a Football Club

by Kevin Day, Kieran Maguire, Guy Kilty

Ever dreamed of setting up your own football club?

Buying a football club will set you back a few quid, but you’ve also got to pass the Premier League and EFL’s ‘fit and proper persons test’. That all seems like a bit of a faff to the team behind the award-winning podcast The Price of Football, so acclaimed comedy writer Kevin Day, football finance expert Kieran Maguire and producer Guy Kilty start an imaginary club instead.

In Unfit and Improper Persons they take West Park Rovers on a hilarious journey from the lowest level of the FA pyramid right up to the English Football League, the Premier League and, if fortune favours the fictional, into the heart of Europe.

At least that’s the plan, but inevitably they face a few challenges along the way. Where to find a shirt sponsor? What should the mascot be – is a dog called Rover too obvious? Can they pay the women’s team the same as the men’s team? (Spoiler alert: hardly anyone else does.) And how can they get Messi to the Kleanwell Stadium next season, like they promised fans?

Roofing over the toilets, paying the electric on the floodlights, salary caps, parachute payments and avoiding bankruptcy, never mind relegation – owning a football club isn’t all about stuffing prawn sarnies and quaffing champagne in the directors’ box.

Unfit and Improper Persons is informed, funny and, thanks to exclusive interviews with those who’ve been there, done that, it lays bare the labyrinthine world of football finance.

‘A very funny book that tackles some serious football issues.’ Gary Lineker

‘Witty and wise.’ Clare Balding

‘Brilliant. Blows the lid off football. Hilarious, detailed and insightful.’ Alan Davies

Kevin and Kieran visit Hastings on the 13 December for a free event (must be booked).

Reserve the pBook Unfit and proper persons


Book cover of Fever Pitch by Nick Hornby.Top Audio

Fever Pitch

by Nick Hornby

Nick Hornby is 11 and utterly miserable, his parents have separated, and his father is uncommunicative. He is looking for something. Football – specifically Arsenal – fills the void. Hornby falls in love with football ‘suddenly, inexplicably, uncritically, giving no thought to the pain or disruption it would bring with it’ an obsession is born.

Fever Pitch is an investigation of a football obsession, poignant, and very funny. Hornby’s life is not measured in days, months and years but in seasons and fixtures. It explains the great mystery – why become a football fan?

“…So please, be tolerant of those who describe a sporting moment as their best ever. We do not lack imagination, nor have we had sad and barren lives; it is just that real life is paler, duller, and contains less potential for unexpected delirium.”

Listen to the eAudio of Fever Pitch

Reserve the pBook of Fever Pitch


Book cover of 'Playoffs' by Tom Palmer; illustrated by Lisa Henke.

Children’s Fiction


by Tom Palmer; illustrated by Lisa Henke

Roy of the Rovers, the classic British children’s football hero has been reimagined for the 21st century, written by Tom Palmer – described by Booktrust as “a true reading hero … responsible for motivating many thousands of young people to get into books”

Reserve the pBook of Play-offs



Children’s non fiction

Book cover of 'Where's the Striker?' by Craig Jelley; illustrations by Paul Moran and Gergely Forizs.

Follow the All-Stars on a footballing tour of the world!

Where’s the Striker is the perfect book for football fans of all ages. Find Lionel Messi and Harry Kane in jam-packed crowds of players and fans. This title explores the diverse & inclusive world of football across the globe.

Find Harry Kane, Virgil Van Dijk, Lionel Messi, Ada Hegerberg and more in this search-and-find world tour.

Reserve the pBook of Where’s the Striker?



Keen to attend a festive event at your local library? Visit the libraries events page for all the details! And if you missed it, check out November’s Get in our Good Books article!