Turns out, Dockery couldn’t get an American contract to play football anywhere after that, and his agent boldly paved the way for him to play NFL in Parma, Italy. It wasn’t an easy sell, but once Rick (or Reek, as his fellow Italian football players fondly call him) landed and started playing football in Parma, nothing would ever be the same for him again.
Still a player among the ladies, he met and entertained a few of them in the story, even stretching his interest in Italy’s unique and intriguing culture of opera and architecture to do so. Cuisine in Italy is not to be missed either, apparently, as you could practically smell the aromas presented while flipping through the pages. Oh, to have some of those decadent cheeses and irresistible sauces, sensually tantalizing my taste buds right now!
Dockery’s contract was with the Parma Panthers, and his “assigned” mission was to help them win their first Italian Super Bowl. Yes, they really do have a Super Bowl in Italy too. Soccer is the much more prominent sport there, which easily explains the title of the book. Italians play football for the love of the game, the thrill of victory and even the agony of defeat. They play for enigmatic male bonding experiences and to look and feel manly – they play for pizza, dreams and memories.
Playing for Pizza is a fun and energetic football story, one that everyone who loves football will appreciate. It’s also a story about humanity that lends insight into human emotion and our ability to overcome past mistakes. Light, fun and easy to read, Playing for Pizza is joyfully being added to my Recommended Reading List.
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Photo Credit: Pizza al Taglio, Rome, shoebill 2, public domain