Author: Mariana Zapata
Genre: new adult, sports
“Trust me, I’ve wanted to punch you in the face a time or five.”
When the man you worshipped as a kid becomes your coach, it’s supposed to be the greatest thing in the world. Keywords: supposed to.
It didn’t take a week for twenty-seven-year-old Sal Casillas to wonder what she’d seen in the international soccer icon—why she’d ever had his posters on her wall, or ever envisioned marrying him and having super-playing soccer babies.
Sal had long ago gotten over the worst non-break-up in the history of imaginary relationships with a man that hadn’t known she’d existed. So she isn’t prepared for this version of Reiner Kulti who shows up to her team’s season: a quiet, reclusive, shadow of the explosive, passionate man he’d once been.
Nothing could have prepared her for the man she got to know.
Or the murderous urges he brought out in her.
“Sal, please don’t make me visit you in jail. Orange isn’t your color.”
This was going to be the longest season of her life.
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Kulti by Mariana Zapata
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
5 **Fußball** STARS
“He was my coach. And I was his friend. Or something like that.”
What a fantastic read. A phenomenally written friends to lovers story surrounding a female soccer player and her new coach - a retired professional player, an icon and he is German. If you don't know, that happens to be my nationality and we like our football. So it was a foregone conclusion that I would love this just because of the premise alone. Add to that a brilliantly developed friendship, top notch bickering and fighting and a once in a lifetime love story. I was a gonner.
“Every single thing that has ever happened in my life has led me here, Sal. Destiny is a ladder, a series of steps that takes you where you’re supposed to go. I am the man that I am, and I have done the things that I’ve done, to get me to you.”
A little more about the story. Twenty-seven year old Sal Casillas always had a crush on now thirty-nine year old Reiner Kulti, her icon and the player and man who made her want to be the athlete she is today. The childhood crush is long gone, but he is still someone she holds dear to her heart. Imagine the surprise when he comes to Houston to be the new assistant coach.
They say, you never should meet your idols, right? Well, it turns out Kulti is a grumpy and silent guy, with a boatload of issues, who couldn't care less about his surroundings, or even teaching the girls anything. Really a disappointment and it doesn't take long for the strong willed Sal to clash with the man of her past dreams. You could say it is an enemy - to friends - to lovers story.
If nothing else Kulti is a slow burn. For everyone who hates insta-love, this might be just the book. A realistically developed relationship with a lot of ups and downs. A very detailed look into the world of women's soccer and the politics behind it. Enjoyable, addictive and heartwarming.
If you are interested to know, the author didn't butcher my mother tongue. She didn't use German all that much, but a lot of endearments and the odd phrase here and there was right on point. I really appreciate actual research when using another language. ;)
And just because...here is a fun fact. Superbowl 2014 - 111.5 Mio viewers. Viewers of the final match of the ‘soccer’ World Cup in 2010 - 909.6 Mio. You tell me which one is the real football. Just sayin'.