Stephen Rea’s eclectic life has led him to more than one hundred countries, all seven continents, and all fifty U.S. states. Born in Belfast, Northern Ireland, he spent his childhood against the backdrop of bombings and shootings in that country during the seventies and eighties. At the age of sixteen, he went on tour with rock star Ozzy Osbourne and later traveled the world as his assistant road manager, contributing a chapter to Osbourne’s official biography Diary of a Madman. In New Orleans, Rea served as the media relations officer for the Shell Shockers, the city’s minor league soccer club.
After his move to New Orleans, Rea struggled to find an outlet for his love of soccer. He discovered an Irish bar in New Orleans’s Mid-City area called Finn McCool’s, an eccentric blend of locals and ex-pats. The men eventually formed a club team and joined a league—the perfect place for Rea to play soccer and express his love of the game. He wrote Finn McCool’s Football Club while he was displaced to Houston, Texas, after Hurricane Katrina, and the story follows not only Rea’s struggles through that difficult period, but the rest of the team’s as well.