Kick‘ is quite unlike any other book I’ve read. For a start its subject matter and setting are real and now, and very different.

Budi works as a child tailor, sewing football boots in an Indonesian factory. He returns to his family-two parents and frail, story telling grandmother- every night, hoping for spicy rendang, but understanding dinner’s likely to be watery rice, if anything. His aspiration to play football for Real Madrid sustains him, ignites his dream future away from the rotan switch, his hidden haemophilia, the slum, and the tyranny of the overlord, Dragon. Then one day Budi’s football lands where it shouldn’t and he is faced with a life or death decision.

This is brave, splendid, conscience-pricking, real writing. I was scared to read ‘Kick‘ but could not put it down. I recommend it to every Bookwagon reader, aged from 10 years old.



Mitch Johnson


Budi dreams about his future as a footballer playing for Real Madrid. Life in an Indonesian boot factory, overseen by the notorious tyrant the Dragon is bearable while there’s a future to dream about, until the day that Budi steps out of line. This powerful story is set in the gritty sweatshop reality of a boy and family to whom every reader will become attached. We recommend ‘Kick’ to Bookwagon readers aged from 10 years.


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