Wednesday, November 14, 2012

What Happens on Sunday, by Laurie Koozer

Pittsburgh is a great many things.  But above all, Pittsburgh is the home of the Steelers, and during football season, life itself seems to revolve around the games.  Steeler football touches all aspects of life, as we see through the tales of several woman.  Their ages and positions in life all vary, but the one thing the have in common, for better or worse, is that their lives are impacted by Steeler football.  Set against the backdrop of the 2005 NFL season, we watch all of these women taking their own journeys, as the Steelers try to journey to the Superbowl.

I am going to say, up front, that this book will be best appreciated by someone familiar with Pittsburgh.  The city, with all her nuances and quirks, is as much a character in this book as the women whose stories we follow.  The book is chock full of Pittsburgh references that would leave an outsider's mind spinning.  But for me, someone who became a Pittsburgher, not by birth but by choice, and spent the 2005 football season living in my first Pittsburgh apartment, this book was simply fantastic, and brought back a lot of memories of that season.  

The female characters are solidly developed.  One of my favorite subtleties of this book is the way all 6 of the main female characters spill over into each others stories, in tiny little ways.  That is exactly how life in Pittsburgh is; it is a big city with a small town feel, everyone seems connected.  I thought that to be clever, and really skillfully woven into the stories without seeming artificial or contrived.

Each woman has her own story to tell, whether she is a newlywed, a divorcee, a high school student.  Each woman deals with her own issues.  The book as a whole seems to deal with the way women interact, with each other, with men, and with a city so obsessed with football.  The book paints a pretty accurate picture, in a tongue in cheek way, of the mania of Steeler fans.  On the surface, the characters (and the city herself) may seem a little silly, being so focused on football, but once you spend some time with them both, you will see that the people are full of heart.

I think this book is the perfect book for any Steeler fan, particularly females.

I received a review copy courtesy of the author in exchange for an honest review. 


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