Review: “Forward: A Memoir” by Abby Wambach

Rating: ★★★★★

Synopsis: Abby Wambach has always pushed the limits of what is possible. At age seven she was put on the boys’ soccer team. At age thirty-five she would become the highest goal scorer—male or female—in the history of soccer, capturing the nation’s heart with her team’s 2015 World Cup Championship. Called an inspiration and “badass” by President Obama, Abby has become a fierce advocate for women’s rights and equal opportunity, pushing to translate the success of her team to the real world.

As she reveals in this searching memoir, Abby’s professional success often masked her inner struggle to reconcile the various parts of herself: ferocious competitor, daughter, leader, wife. With stunning candor, Abby shares her inspiring and often brutal journey from girl in Rochester, New York, to world-class athlete. Far more than a sports memoir, Forward is gripping tale of resilience and redemption—and a reminder that heroism is, above all, about embracing life’s challenges with fearlessness and heart.

Review: I first heard of Abby Wambach while a friend and I followed the 2015 Women’s World Cup since that was the first year the women would get full coverage. Said friend and I quickly let Wambach become one of our favorite players because of her LGBT+ advocacy and her amazing skills on the field. I’m glad to have read this memoir because there is so much more to her. This book isn’t just for soccer fans, it is for everyone. I’m also very appreciative that she opened up about so many difficult topics in such a public way. I can’t imagine dealing with addiction and mental illness in the spotlight like Wambach has. Yet here she is in this book to us that it might pass like a kidney stone, but this, too, shall pass. She is an inspiration in so many ways, and I am sure that she will continue to be such for years to come.

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