Soccer in Sun and Shadow, by Eduardo Galeano

"This is sheer reading. This is literature we're talking about, not hack soccer writing like mine," Vescey says of Uruguayan author Galeano's paean to soccer, published in 1995. The book is held in such high esteem, for example, that it's required reading in college anthropology classes that deal with sport's impact on society. The book is an easily digestible compendium of mini-essays, including sections discussing: "How is soccer like God?" the ways soccer can be compared to war, and the collective hatred of referees by fans of every nation. Nothing sums up the artistry of Galeano's work than this profound idea: "When good soccer happens, I give thanks for the miracle, and I don't give a damn which team or country performs it."