Editor's Note: I was provided a review copy of the latest book in the Sports Illustrated Kids "Top 10 Lists" series - "Top 10 Lists of Everything in Hockey", by Time Inc. Books.
Face-Off! Top 10 List of Everything in Hockey is the latest in a series of list-based "coffee table" books by the editors of Sports Illustrated. The first thing you'll notice when opening this book is how gorgeous and vibrant it is, packed full of iconic NHL images beautifully laid out across 78 pages.
The book wastes no time jumping into perhaps the most important list of them all - the top 10 greatest players. Wayne Gretzky or Bobby Orr? This list is followed up with best traditions, single-game performances and rivalries. Keeping in mind the target audience for this book is the SI Kids generation, the fun then starts with a list of top ten smiles. You can imagine the mugs that jump out of these pages, remember Mike Ricci?
We see the best "little guys" and best "big guys" listed, and lists of best logos. Hardest shots, best coaches, memorable trades and best goalies are mixed in with the more silly lists, like best hair (with appearances by one current and one former Blue Jacket), best nicknames and best Don Cherry suits.
I think my favorite list though, was the Top 10 Terrible Sweaters. Yes, the "mooterus" is there, along with pretty well every sweater from the early days of alternates in the 1990s. I have to disagree with their 7th-ranked sweater, though, the Oilers gear/oil drop sweater from 2001 to 2007. Loved that jersey!
I flipped through this book with my three year old, and she loved it. She's at the point where she's showing a legitimate interest in the sport, both as a way to stay up a little longer with Daddy and for her own love of all things goaltending. For toddlers like my daughter, the book is vivid enough to capture and keep attention, though there are enough stories, stats and graphics to please a hockey fan of any age.
This is truly a nice book, the kind of book you leave out when you have friends over to spark fun hockey discussion. It's beautiful to look at, and I guarantee that there's content in it that even the most encyclopedic hockey fan wasn't aware of.
I've seen this book at Costco here in Canada, and I'm sure you can get it at any of the major bookstores in the US. You can also grab it off Amazon.
Though it's an SI Kids book, I really do recommend it for fans of all ages.