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1. Three Nights in August
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2. Sunday Money : Speed! Lust! Madness!
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3. Season of Life: A Football Star,
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4. The Miracle of St. Anthony: A
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5. Idiot : Beating "The Curse" and
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6. Fearless Golf : Conquering the
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7. Tour Tempo: Golf's Last Secret
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8. Cubs Nation : 162 Games. 162 Stories.
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9. Cinderella Man : James Braddock,
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10. Chapman Piloting & Seamanship
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11. Five Lessons: The Modern Fundamentals
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12. The Men's Health Book of Muscle
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13. Ultimate Flexibility: A Complete
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14. Wooden
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15. Boatowner's Mechanical & Electrical
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16. Golf Annika's Way
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17. Six Secrets of Successful Bettors
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18. Understanding the Golf Swing
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19. All Those Mornings…at The Post:
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20. The Old Ball Game: How John McGraw,

1. Three Nights in August
by Buzz Bissinger
list price: $25.00
our price: $16.50
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0618405445
Catlog: Book (2005-04-05)
Publisher: Houghton Mifflin
Sales Rank: 73
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
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Book Description

A Pulitzer Prize-winning author captures baseball"s strategic and emotional essences through a point-blank account of one three-game series viewed through the keen eyes of legendary manager Tony La Russa. Drawing on unprecedented access to a manager and his team, Bissinger brings the same revelatory intimacy to major-league baseball that he did to high school football in his classic besteller, Friday Night Lights.
Three Nights in August shows thrillingly that human nature -- not statistics -- can often dictate the outcome of a ballgame. We watch from the dugout as the St. Louis Cardinals battle their archrival Chicago Cubs for first place, and we uncover delicious surprises about the psychology of the clutch, the eccentricities of pitchers, the rise of video, and the complex art of retaliation when a batter is hit by a pitch. Through the lens of these games, Bissinger examines the dramatic changes that have overtaken baseball: from the decline of base stealing to the difficulty of motivating players to the rise of steroid use. More tellingly, he distills from these twenty-seven innings baseball's constants -- its tactical nuances, its emotional pull.
During his twenty-six years of managing, La Russa won more games than any other current manager and ranks sixth all-time. He has been named Manager of the Year a record five times and is considered by many to be the shrewdest mind in the game today. For all his intellectual attainments, he"s also an antidote to the number-crunching mentality that has become so modish in baseball. As this book proves, he's built his success on the conviction that ballgames are won not only by the numbers but also by the hearts and minds of those who play.
... Read more

Reviews (16)

5-0 out of 5 stars Terrific look at baseball behind the scenes
3 Nights in August is an awesome look at baseball and why it is such a great game.Buzz Bissinger follows Tony LaRussa around and chronicles a 3 game series with the Cubs.There are plenty of asides - histories of players, coaches, strategy think sessions, etc.It really brought baseball to life for me.For too many years I have lived through "fantasy" baseball, numbers flying at me through the internet.That is no way to enjoy baseball.To enjoy it through the eyes of a manager and a team that love the game - that was something very fun.

However, if you don't like baseball, you probably will be bored silly throughout this book.But you never know - give it a chance and you may appreciate the game a little bit more.

4-0 out of 5 stars Great Read for Real Fans
Buzz Bissinger is a talented journalist and writer, who knows how to tell good stories about the people who play and manage sports.He also has the ability to capture some of the beautiful complexity of baseball, as seen through the eyes of Tony LaRussa, and play it out in ways that make the book difficult to put down.He does not approach his subject with the sublime wit infused throughout Michael Lewis's Moneyball.Nor does he go so far as to deconstruct the whole game, like George Will did in Men at Work: The Craft of Baseball.While I rank those books above this one, you will find Three Nights in August a thoroughly satisfying read if you read and liked those books.

4-0 out of 5 stars Great Look Behind the Scenes!
This book is a great chance to see what goes on in the many hours between baseball games and the life of an athlete on the road.Stories of Rick Ankiel and J.D. Drew are great examples of the perils of the modern athlete, while the part about Daryl Kile will tear out your heart!Reading about the seeming indifference of a gifted athlete like Jose Canseco can make one question why they believe in baseball, but then there's the story of Albert Pujols to restore one's faith.By the way, Bissinger mentions about Canseco's apathy about playing during the 1990 season without following up with the Oakland A's getting swept by the mighty underdog Red in the Series that year.My big question after reading the book is, "How does Tony LaRussa continue to function while getting so little sleep?"

5-0 out of 5 stars Excellent book
It's hard to believe the Tony LaRussa in 3 Nights in August is the same expressionless man I see in the dugout every Cardinals game.

I'm a huge baseball fan and a coach, and I recommend this book to every ball player before he begins playing in high school.The book was educational for me as a coach, and I wish I'd have read it when I was playing.As a fan, it's easy for me disagree with a manager's decisions when he puts in a .230 average utility infielder in a close game, but two of my favorite topics in the book are the importance of bench management and developing younger players.

My only complaint about the book is Buzz Bissinger's vocabulary.I read because I enjoy it and it keeps my mind sharp.I have reasonable intelligence and a decent vocabulary.But I think Bissinger, like too many authors, sacrifices the flow of the story to boast his own vocabulary, and, in the process, he makes the reader feel intellectually-inferior.Any word that isn't used at least rarely in a conversation should be equally absent in a book.It's frustrating when I'm reading about baseball and I have to stop to figure out or look up the meaning of words like leitmotif.

Aside from the abundance of unnecessary foreign words, I loved the book.Bissinger did a great job of showing the different personalities of the Cardinals players, coaches, and behind-the-scenes workers.

5-0 out of 5 stars Already Seems So Long Ago
Bissinger's book isn't as inspiring as FRIDAY NIGHT LIGHTS, but he's a careful stylist, and the depth of his take on manager Tony LaRussa may never be equalled.Tony's fights and reconciliations with his wife, Elaine, over family issues and how to work out a long distance marriage are part of the book, a big part, and any honest reader will see both sides to the story and will come away with admiration for both LaRussa's for trying to handle a difficult issue in public.

Darryl Kile's death, which ironically occurred in Chicago, the city with which St Louis has such a great rivalry, is presented here in moving detail.I feel sorry for Flynn, Kile's lovely wife, and their children.Their little boy is maybe three or four now and yet he will never know his father.

The story of Rick Ankiel is treated more lightly, and will keep you in stitches.Ankiel, the pride of Fort Pierce, comes off in Bissinger's aphoristic prose as a bit of a flake.

The three games Bissinger writes about are thrillingly presented, but when I closed the book it all seemed to have happened so long ago, particularly because only in the past year or so has the issue really been broached about steroid use.LaRussa seems honest about this, but it's hard to tell how much he's covering his own ass about rampant steroid use on his team and what he knew about it.After Jose Canseco's book and congressional hearings into the matter, maybe the real story will have to wait until a few more players die brutal and unexpected deaths.Or perhaps, as Canseco implies, you're not really a man if you can't handle the drugs that go with baseball.

I must also add a word in favor of LaRussa's work with the Animal Rescue people.No matter what people say about Tony, you know his heart is in the right place, and this animal work is nothing new for him, he's been into it for eons.Good for him.If St Louis ever tires of T, there's a place for him reserved at Rainbow Bridge. ... Read more


2. Sunday Money : Speed! Lust! Madness! Death! A Hot Lap Around America with Nascar
by Jeff MacGregor
list price: $25.95
our price: $17.13
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0060094710
Catlog: Book (2005-05-01)
Publisher: HarperCollins
Sales Rank: 171
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
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Amazon.com

Author Jeff MacGregor was committed to understanding NASCAR, so instead of merely dropping in on a race or two, he traveled the nearly yearlong season in an RV with his wife, photographer Olya Evanitsky. The result is many books in one. It's a vivid history of the sport's roots, as it grows from a rowdy way for Florida good ol' boys to blow off steam to being a titan of American culture with a fan base of 75 million. It also covers a broad swath of personalities within NASCAR--from the widely loved and even more widely loathed driver Jeff Gordon to the iconic Richard Petty to Dale Earnhardt, whose mythic power grew exponentially after his death at Daytona (death is never far from anyone’s mind in NASCAR). Finally, Sunday Money is a memoir--MacGregor chronicles exactly what life is like when a married couple blows their savings on a massive RV and logs 48,000 miles within the blasting radius of race after race after race.

MacGregor is funny, and it's interesting to watch how a man skeptical of the sport's allure at the beginning of the adventure is sucked in as the story goes along. As a writer, he's in no hurry, knocking off several paragraphs in the interest of a single whimsical analogy if he sees fit. Much of the time the diversions hit the mark, (sometimes they don't) and it's nice to see an editor let a talented writer like MacGregor run loose. NASCAR loyalists may enjoy the behind-the-scenes scoop even if they don't necessarily need to be introduced to who the drivers are. But non-fans who have been wondering why racing has become so huge so fast, may understand a little better after reading Sunday Money. It's a huge book, a massive sprawling narrative, but for a sport that is active nearly every weekend of the year and is growing ever larger and more successful, the length seems perfect. --John Moe

Photos from the Sunday Money 2002 NASCAR Tour

NASCAR star Jeff Gordon autographs for fans

Tony Stewart wins the NASCAR Winston Cup

Fans pack the stands for the Pepsi 400

NASCAR driver Dale Earnhardt Jr.

Ward Burton's car pits mid-race during the NAPA 500

Cars race around the track in Charlotte
Jeff MacGregor's Top Ten Tips for Your First NASCAR Race
    10. Day race? Bring ear plugs, hat, binoculars.

    9. Night race? Bring ear plugs, hat, beer goggles.

    8. At Daytona and Talladega, there’s no such thing as too much sunblock. SPF 45. Apply liberally. Repeat, as needed, until you slip from your seat like a watermelon seed.

    7. Yes, NASCAR is expanding everywhere and very fast, but effortful puns on the word Madagascar will only lead to embarrassment.

    6. Your copy of Sunday Money is an excellent conversation starter for making new friends at the track. Thanks to its quilted cover, it also doubles as a comfy seat-cushion and a stylish windshield sun-screen.

    5. Drivers cannot hear you yelling encouragement from the 58th row when they’re actually lapping the track. This will not stop the high school kid behind you from doing so.

    4. Like room service Eggs Benedict, the Jumbo Grilled Turkey Legs at any racetrack always sound far better than they are. Avoid them. Let them thrive in the happy hunger of your imagination, rather than deliver their sad reality to your somersaulting innards. Life bears enough disappointments.

    3. Women, despite the signs you’ll see in the third turn campground, there’s no such thing as a "Free Trackside Mammogram." Don’t let the Mardi Gras beads fool you; there are shockingly few accredited radiologists working the infield on race weekend.

    2. All-purpose, all-context catch phrase guaranteed to make a NASCAR newbie sound like an old hand? "Go, Junior!" Appropriate any time!

    1. If your tailgate margarita machine doesn’t make at least ten horsepower on the blender-drink dyno, don’t bother. Go big, baby, or don’t go.

... Read more

Reviews (11)

5-0 out of 5 stars Take a spin with Jeff and the Beep
It is hard to describe the pleasure reading this book causes.Part of it is the sheer audacity of abandoning your comfortable life in NYC to the strict confines of motorhome living.And then reading as Jeff and his wife try to understand what they have gotten themselves into.And yet through all the noise and the smoke, Jeff seems to have crystallized the NASCAR experience for the fan and non-fan alike.His descriptions leap off the page and require you to pay attention.A must read for any fan of great writing

5-0 out of 5 stars Wit and wisdom
I wouldn't consider myself a died-in-the-wool huge NASCAR fan, but this book was terrific.MacGregor's style is full of wit and yet he peels back much of the unknown about NASCAR and it's followers.He more than satisfies our curiosity and, as a result, leaves us not only smarter about NASCAR, but wiser about the kaleidoscope of our society.

3-0 out of 5 stars Mainly for NASCAR fans
I'll admit, I'm not a NASCAR fan.Nothing against it, I just don't follow the sport.

But, I saw author Jeff MacGregor interviewed by David Letterman about this book.It was honestly one of the funniest interviews Dave has ever done.MacGregor was hysterical, talking about the events in the book. So, I rushed out to buy it.I even bought it full price from a local book store rather than ordering it at a discount from Amazon.

The book follows MacGregor and his wife as they spend a year driving around to the various tracks in an RV.

While MacGregor is a great writer, extremely descriptive, lively writing, the focus got to be more about NASCAR and the races, rather than the world around NASCAR, the people that follow it, which is what I thought it was going to be mainly about.I mean, he spent ten pages talking about driving a racecar, going into complete description about the experience.For race fans, this will be a great read.For me, not so much.

If you are into NASCAR, this will be a 5 star book for you.You will LOVE it.But, as for myself, not being much into NASCAR, it wasn't for me.I would rather see a documentary on MacGregor's trip.

5-0 out of 5 stars Read It
Perhaps a little mad himself (he and his wife cash their savings in for a dee-lux motorhome), a better author I couldn't imagine for taking me on this raucous roll around the racetracks, and through the heart of America. SUNDAY MONEY is a sexy, witty, colorful portrait of the world that is NASCAR.

5-0 out of 5 stars "Sunday Money" is right on the money!
The roar of the engines.The roar of the crowds.You'll roar with laughter when you read Jeff MacGregor's "Sunday Money". This funny and informative book is a terrific read. You can almost taste the burning rubber and the BBQ as you race through this page turner. Mr. MacGregor and his photographer wife Olya, traveled around America for almost a year in a motorohome to create this book. The end result is a tale of the origins of NASCAR, and where the sport stands today. On any given Sunday you might find upwards of 400,000 screaming fans watching these daring young men take their lives in their hands. Six hundred horsepower cars, sometimes running three abreast at nearly two hundred miles an hour, inches away from each other. We've come a long way from the chariot races of Ben Hur. I don't think these drivers get the credit they deserve. What I liked most about this book is it gave me an insight not only into racing, but the culture that surrounds it. I wouldn't classify myself a racing fan by any means, but "Sunday Money" gave me a true appreciation of the sport, as it vividly brings to life the happenings on and off the track. Hot cars.Hot guys. Smoking hot girls! That's right. Babes aplenty. What more could you ask for? "Sunday Money" is right on the money! ... Read more


3. Season of Life: A Football Star, a Boy, a Journey to Manhood
by Jeffrey Marx
list price: $18.00
our price: $12.24
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0743269748
Catlog: Book (2004-09-01)
Publisher: Simon & Schuster
Sales Rank: 363
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Book Description

Joe Ehrmann, a former NFL football star and volunteer coach for the Gilman high school football team, teaches his players the keys to successful defense: penetrate, pursue, punish, love. Love? A former captain of the Baltimore Colts and now an ordained minister, Ehrmann is serious about the game of football but even more serious about the purpose of life. Season of Life is his inspirational story as told by Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Jeffrey Marx, who was a ballboy for the Colts when he first met Ehrmann.

Ehrmann now devotes his life to teaching young men a whole new meaning of masculinity. He teaches the boys at Gilman the precepts of his Building Men for Others program: Being a man means emphasizing relationships and having a cause bigger than yourself. It means accepting responsibility and leading courageously. It means that empathy, integrity, and living a life of service to others are more important than points on a scoreboard.

Decades after he first met Ehrmann, Jeffrey Marx renewed their friendship and watched his childhood hero putting his principles into action. While chronicling a season with the Gilman Greyhounds, Marx witnessed the most extraordinary sports program he'd ever seen, where players say "I love you" to each other and coaches profess their love for their players. Off the field Marx sat with Ehrmann and absorbed life lessons that led him to reexamine his own unresolved relationship with his father.

Season of Life is a book about what it means to be a man of substance and impact. It is a moving story that will resonate with athletes, coaches, parents -- anyone struggling to make the right choices in life. ... Read more


4. The Miracle of St. Anthony: A Season with Coach Bob Hurley and Basketball's Most Improbable Dynasty
by AdrianWojnarowski
list price: $25.00
our price: $16.50
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 1592401023
Catlog: Book (2005-02-17)
Publisher: Gotham
Sales Rank: 1827
Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars
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Book Description

The inspiring story of an inner-city basketball team and the fiery coaching genius who leads them to greatness.

On the mean streets of Jersey City, St. Anthony High School is more than a tiny brick schoolhouse-it is a beacon of hope. Though the school constantly teeters on the brink of bankruptcy, it is held together by two feisty Felician nuns devoted to helping students overcome the scourges of poverty by preparing them for college careers and a chance at a brighter future. And each year from this student body of just over two hundred, Coach Bob Hurley forges an elite nationally ranked basketball team through hard work, his coaching genius, and the sheer force of his persona.

In Bob Hurley's gym there are no earrings, no tattoos, and there is never any backtalk. There is only hard-nosed, old-fashioned basketball executed in its purest form, with precision passing and a relentless, swarming defense that has brought 800 victories, twenty-two state titles, and two national championships to a program that has sent over a hundred players to college scholarships. But in the fall of 2003, Hurley will put it all on the line, and fight to build a team of young men he calls "the most dysfunctional group I've had in thirty-two years" into champions, while keeping the school he loves alive to continue its educational mission at any cost.

In The Miracle of St. Anthony, one of America's most acclaimed sportswriters, Adrian Wojnarowski, brings the stories of this coaching legend and his St. Anthony Friars players to vivid life. A four-year starter torn between what he could've been and the pull of the streets must prove to his teammates that he can lead when it really counts. a senior haunted by a family tree of drug dealers tries to redeem himself in his coach's eyes. And the privileged son of a suburban Connecticut family who has come to Jersey City to play for Hurley and feed his NBA dreams must find a way to win when his shooting stroke goes cold.

In a dramatic narrative, Wojnarowski takes you from the explosive locker room speeches to the final whistle on the pressure-packed hardcourt at the championship final. The Miracle of St. Anthony is a stirring portrait of basketball and life in the inner city, a heartrending story of hope that is sure to become a classic. ... Read more

Reviews (8)

5-0 out of 5 stars awesome read
I've coached hoops for thirty and am going to make my HS team read this book this summer.Hurley is old school, teaching the new school about class, effort, and loyalty.I wrote Coach Hurley about 10 years ago and he promptly wrote back, sending me a play I inquired about.

The book is well written and has too many life lessons and soulful anecdotes to recognize in this space, less I write a book myself. If you coach, or have a child interested in striving for some lofty goal--regardless it be in sports--this book is a bible of wisdom and textured life journeys.

5-0 out of 5 stars Jersey City Kids Make Good!
In this book, first-time author Adrian Wojnarowski makes you care about Bob Hurley and his rag-tag band of basketball players long after the last page is turned.You will find yourself performing a search in google to find out what became of them all.You will care that much.

And he makes you want to subscribe to the Jersey Journal to keep tabs on the comings and goings of everybody connected with St. Anthony's.Shoot, I used to be an English teacher and I had all I could do not to go online and apply for a job there!

Passion like Bob Hurley's is rare in any school, but the story of the St. Anthony Friars will warm your heart.It's comforting to know that people like Bob Hurley, Sister Alan and Sister Felicia are out there making a difference.

I grew up in Jersey City and went to St. Mary's High School, which was the arch-rival of St. Anthony's in the late 1960s.Adrian's book brought back a flood of memories for me.Stuff I didn't even know I'd stored in my memory bank (like the fact that Nehru King was the biggest basketball star the Friars had back in 1969!).Whether you are a basketball player, a fan or just someone who cares about kids, you will be touched by this moving story of a bunch of teenager basketball players who could have gone either way and their coach who wouldn't give up on them no matter what.

5-0 out of 5 stars Impossible to put down
I've read what many consider to be the best sports books ever written-Friday Night Lights, A Season on the Brink, and The Last Shot-and I think you have to put this book in that mix, if not at the top. It's such am amazing story-not only do you have the "Bobby Knight with a heart" coach pushing kids to make something of their life, but you also have a Catholic school struggling to stay open, and a nun fighting cancer. Talk about drama! Hurley is a total bad ass, a former probation officer who motivates thru fear, and the dude definitaly has his flaws, including a vicious temper, which makes the book so exciting but also makes you wonder if he takes things to far. I don't know how the author managed to be everywhere while writing this book, but man did this guy cover everything. I especially liked reading about Hurley's relationships with his sons, since I remember watching Bobby at Duke and Danny at Seton Hall. I'm no critic, but all I can tell you is that this book was impossible to put down.

5-0 out of 5 stars One of the Best Books I have ever read
This is an excellent story of the 2003-2004 high school basketball season at St. Anthony's High School in Jersey City.Its a touching story of a coach who cares about his kids and about all of them making the most of their lives.Bob Hurley gave up potentially millions of dollars to stay at home at Jersey City to keep the school alive and keep the tradition of St. Anthony's High School alive.Bob Hurley is a true hero in my eyes.This book is an absolute page turner and you will not be able to put it down.Again, I will repeat, one of the best books I have ever read.

4-0 out of 5 stars The Miracle of St. Anthony
I have not yet finished reading this book, but from what Ive read I can say that its a terrific book.If you are a basketball fan or not, you will understand everything that its trying to get through.It is an inspiring story about how one coach led his team to success.It wasnt an easy task but why dont you read so you can see what was done so they could get this outcome! ... Read more


5. Idiot : Beating "The Curse" and Enjoying the Game of Life
by JOHNNY DAMON, PETER GOLENBOCK
list price: $24.00
our price: $16.32
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 030723763X
Catlog: Book (2005-04-04)
Publisher: Crown
Sales Rank: 2452
Average Customer Review: 3.5 out of 5 stars
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Reviews (14)

4-0 out of 5 stars OK Book
Damon's book is not a challenge.It's not all that deep.But, it gives a great inside look into the Red Sox as they pursued the championship.It also tells a little of a ballplayers career and history.

It's an entertaining book and it's an easy and fast read and worth the time.

Also, read 3 Nights in August.

2-0 out of 5 stars ehh....
I am a huge Red Sox fan and I used to be a big Johnny Damon fan too. After reading this book, I dont see him in the same light. He is constantly talking about how he is such a great player, how the team couldnt win without him and blah blah blah. He loves himself a bit too much. It gets a bit boring throughout the book, and I found that hard and odd considering last season was very exciting. Having Damon talk about how they would have won more games if he had played those games shows that he is NOT a team player. Don't bother wasting money on this. This book was obviously written just to make a quick buck.....

3-0 out of 5 stars Fun read, but so many mistakes...
It's an interesting read, with some good anecdotes and inside-details about the team and their chemistry.But I can't fathom how they let this many mistakes get through - what was Peter Golenbock doing, sleeping through the whole thing?For example:

- misspelling people's names (including Sox bench coach Brad Mills)
- in the same paragraph referring to Jim Edmonds correctly and also as Jim Edwards
- talking about David Ortiz hitting a 2-run homer in game 1 of the ALCS to bring the score to 8-7...no, it was a 2-run double
- describing Mark Bellhorn's homerun in game 6 of the ALCS as going to right-center....no, it went to left field.

This is just the tip of the iceberg.Do you blame Damon for this?Maybe - shouldn't he know the name of his own team's bench coach?But again, Peter Golenbock supposedly contributed to this book, but I don't see how that's possible.

It's still an enjoyable, if quick, read, but you will have to look past tons of mistakes.

2-0 out of 5 stars Rushed to make a buck
I'm a huge Sox fan, but hugely disappointed with this book. First, it's clear they rushed it to print to cash in on the recent WS win. Very poorly written (which isn't Damon's fault, as he's not a writer) The book jumps all over the place and repeats itself constantly. He continually talks about how the players don't care about the Boston media, but then focuses on it repeatedly. We all know Shaugnessey is an idiot. He didn't have to put it in the book 10 times.

As someone else mentioned, he does come off very cocky. Pinpoints certain stats in certain years to make himself sound like the league MVP. He calls out teammates/ex-teammates for specific plays/decisions.

I was hoping that this would be an "inside" look at the 2004 Sox from the player/clubhouse standpoint. Don't buy it if that's what you're looking for. Unfortunately, it's just an inside look at a player who thinks a lot of himself. I was surprised that he came off like this. I expect it from someone like Schilling, but really thought Damon was more down to earth. Oh well. I'll wait for Bill Mueller or Tim Wakefield to write a book before I buy another one.

1-0 out of 5 stars Johnny is a Jerk
Yes, that's right.My mistake as a die hard Red Sox fan was reading this book.I used to think of him as a smart intelligent baseball player, but after reading his autobiography, I flinch each time he steps up to the plate.

REASONS WHY JOHNNY IS A JERK...he compares himself to Ted Williams, gets pissed off he didn't make the All Star team, admits for using a seperate cell phone for his one-nights stands (while mentioning his two year old twins only twice in the entire book....HE MENTIONS HIS HAIR more often that that), and solely credits himself for winning the Championship...so much for team player!

I am still a die hard Sox fan, and after reading Damon's book, I wish he never got a ring! ... Read more


6. Fearless Golf : Conquering the Mental Game
by Gio Valiante
list price: $21.95
our price: $14.93
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0385511922
Catlog: Book (2005-05-03)
Publisher: Doubleday
Sales Rank: 1842
Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars
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Reviews (4)

5-0 out of 5 stars WOW!

Wow!This is an unbelievable book. Dr Gio Valiante tackles fear by grabbing it and reaching deep so that you know every facet of its power - but more than that he provides very practical steps to overcome and transform these feelings into feelings of "self-efficacy" or confidence. I love this book - it is a classic and it is a must read. Be prepared to mark it up because there is so much to discover you'll defiantly want to refer back -- if not re-read the whole book many times. Thank you so much for this important piece of work Dr. Valiante.

5-0 out of 5 stars Target Golf
These are tough reviews to write, giving prospective reader enough to want them to read, yet not tell them the jist of the book that they won't need to purchase and read.

It's about the target, keeping your mind not on the previous outcome or the potential outcome but one's target.To do this one needs to bring efficacy, which is achieved by working on the right set of attributes of previous failures and modeling each barrier as a potential hurdle to overcome.

Valiante provides this target golf mental game by revealing where previous "mastery" golfers as opposed to "ego" golfers have their orientations.This he accomplishes with classic champs such as Nicklaus and Hogan and current mental game champs such as Wooks, DL3 and DeMarco.

This is a good read, encouraging the journey as much as anything to keep the joy and challenge of the game and courses at the forefront.Will confront all golfers with their mental approach.

5-0 out of 5 stars Transcending Psychology: Valiante'sgroundbreaking success
Dr. Valiante makes his mark as the superstar he is becoming within the world of golf psychology.With a decisive assertion that fear is eminent within every golfer of every ability level, Dr. Valiante revolutionizes our learning of how to positively respond to these emotions.Dr. Valiante's exemplary book combines a tremendous amount of personal research with stories of golfing superstars such as Nicklaus, Hogan, Woods, Mickelson, and Love III, that effectively complements his vast knowledge of the game of golf.As a student of the game, I strongly believe that this book can transcend every golfer into a fearless competitor.Dr. Valiante should be commended on such an incredible accomplishment, as the game of golf is about to see an explosion of the effects of how intregal this book will be to golfers of every level.Congratulations Gio on a job superbly done!

5-0 out of 5 stars the new standard for golf's mental side and beyond
valiante takes golf psychology to a new level with this book. whereas rotella's message is very anectodal and breaks down to something like "equipment and your swing don't matter, stop trying to be perfect and accept things more," valiante's message has more a lot more depth. he acknowlegdes the importance of a good swing and the right equipment and his message is well grounded in psychological research.although breaking his message down to a few points is no easy task (as a matter of fact, he goes out of his way at the end to say it's really up to the individual to frame a message in their own context), it would be something like:

- don't attempt to try and control emotions by pretending they don't exist and that you're not nervous, rather condition yourself to respond productively when these feelings arise;
- focus on things you can control such as preparing properly, developing a plan for the course and the target for your next shot, rather than things you can't control such as what other players are shooting or the weather;
- practise makes permanent rather perfect, so be realistic about what it is you need to work on to get better and how accurately your practise routine reflects these items;
- strive to maintain a light grip, because when the nerves tense up you will lose feelings in your outer extremities and without realizing it, you will grip the club much tighter and hit poor shots as a result.

there are other important elements of this book that from someone else's perspective might be prioritized differently (consistent with the notion of what's key for each individual), but these are the keys for me.clearly, the principles laid out in this book transcend golf and provide a framework for success in life.this is one of the few books of any kind that i am certain to re-read from start to finish -- it's really so powerful that you'll want to make sure you don't miss anything and are left with the right plan for you.

my one criticism is the book's format: several exemplarystories about golf professionals (nicklaus, woods, dimarco, stewart, toms, mickelson, etc etc) are inter-woventhroughout the chapters but in odd spots where if you want to read the story it interrupts the flow of the chapter or section.most of them are worth reading, however it would have been a lot better to put them at the end of sections to reinforce the point(s) that had just been fully articulated.

but that said this is clearly an instant classic and becomes the new standard that replaces the works on golf psychology that preceded it.

bravo gio! ... Read more


7. Tour Tempo: Golf's Last Secret Finally Revealed
by John Novosel, John Garrity
list price: $25.00
our price: $17.00
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0385509278
Catlog: Book (2004-04-27)
Publisher: Doubleday
Sales Rank: 2598
Average Customer Review: 4.78 out of 5 stars
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Book Description

As an avid golfer and inventor, John Novosel studied films of the PGA greats, searching, along with countless others over the last century, for the key to what made certain golfers' swings so effortless, artful, and effective. Viewing the films, Novosel made a startling discovery. Nearly every champion demonstrated identical timing in their swings. An extensive review of archival footage of the greats throughout confirmed his findings. From Ben Hogan to Tiger Woods, whether the swings were fast or slow, the winning rhythm remained constant.

In this breakthrough book, Novosel and Sports Illustrated writer John Garrity lay out exactly how to achieve this tour tempo. Enhanced with photographs and illustrations, this clear, step-by-step method teaches golfers how to resynchronize their swings and play like a pro. An accompanying CD-ROM vividly illustrates the full swing sequence and features a calibrated soundtrack that readers can use while practicing at a driving range or in their backyards.

Novosel's teaching technique has resulted in tremendous and rapid improvement for players of all levels. In a world of gimmicky, quick-sell golf instructionals, TOUR TEMPO is the real thing.
... Read more

Reviews (9)

5-0 out of 5 stars A must for a golfer's library
I was skeptical about the claims made by others regarding the information found in Mr. Novasel's book, "Tour Tempo." I learned of the book from another avid golfer. I decided that I would give it a shot and purchased the book. I have been working with the CD and book for roughly three weeks now. I play two times a week. Before digesting the information, I was shooting in the mid to upper 80s. I am now shooting in the upper 70s and believe that with additional tempo work I will see my score decrease more. The book is well-written and easy to understand.

5-0 out of 5 stars Tour Tempo: Golf's Last Secret Finally Revealed
Tour Tempo - It Works! I got the Tour Tempo book less than two weeks ago just out of curiosity. I've read the book twice, I've viewed the DVD for a short while, and I have listened to the CD repeatedly in my car.

I have played since I was a kid, but not being a natural golfer, I have been burdened with too many swing thoughts. The best I have ever been is a 16 handicap; in the last two years playing once a week I have not broken 90. I do not belong to a club so I don't have easy access to a practice range; I sometimes swing a club in the yard. I have only played 9 holes 4 times this season. Yesterday I played in an outing at Little Mountain in Concord, Ohio. It has a reputation for being a difficult course.

In preparation for this round I listened to the Tour Tempo CD in my car on the way to the golf course. I arbitrarily picked the 24/8 tempo (27/9 sounded too slow & 21/7 seemed like it might be too fast). I alternated between track 5 (3 tones) and track 6 "Swing, Set, Through".

There is no driving range at this course, so a few swings on the first tee had to suffice.
On the course, before each shot, I took two practice swings silently saying "Swing, Set, Through" in my head.

I missed only two fairways, shot a 40-43-83 but more importantly, my biggest swing flaw was entirely eliminated. I have had a tendency to not finish my swing. With Tour Tempo, I found myself accelerating through the ball with the club swinging to finish naturally. My bad swings, which were few, were not bad swings at all, but alignment errors. Even my few mis-hits had decidedly better results.

I always knew tempo was important, but no one was ever able to tell me what good tempo is. You have not only solved the mystery, but made great tempo almost instantly accessible. I am obviously looking forward to even greater improvement. Thanks!

Jeffrey S. Young
Cleveland, Ohio

5-0 out of 5 stars ENDING OF PERFECT SWING SEARCH
I have Played Golf for over 3 years now. So many golf books I have read but my breaking 90 seems so impossible until I bought the Tour Tempo. I practice just 30 minutes a day and after 2 days practice, my driver soaring to 270 yards and straighter(before I was just 240 yards). I have to change all my iron yardage by adding around 15 yards each. Now breaking 90 is easy. Its incredible book. Must buy for anyone who has played golf more than one year ( I do not think it will do much for a beginner)

5-0 out of 5 stars My Homage to An Incredible Discovery
I, being 17 years old, an avid golf addict and an absolute beast on the course, lol (the latter being untrue) have had nothing but skepticism for training aids to come out in the past few years. Kallasy's Swing Magic? SwingWeights? These things promoted too much thinking about swing mechanics, and not enough about what makes really good golfers good; the fact that they swing so slow to the eye, but yet generate so much clubhead speed. I bought the book and read it, listened to teh CD and did teh exercises for a week. As I stated above, I'm pretty young, so I have always swung pretty hard (117 mph) but I always had issues with my tempo, because it looked like I accelerated too much coming back. In one week, after doing the program, I hit two drives over 355 yards. 300 was always pretty attainable, but not 350. And even more impressive, I shot even par, which isnt bad for an 8 handicap. I thoroughly recommend taht you try this book, because there is no sense in clogging your mind with swing magic, or any of that, the only important thing that really matters; Tour Tempo.

5-0 out of 5 stars Golf's "holy grail" has been discovered!
This book contains the answer to all of the questions about golf. It explains why people have such a difficult time playing the game consistently. It shows you what the professionals really do differently than amateurs.

The book provides a training aid that will produce dramatic improvement in clubhead speed, accuracy and consistency.

The amazing thing is that the answer is quite simple. The training aid is easy to use and results are immediate.

This is a remarkable discovery by John Novosal. ... Read more


8. Cubs Nation : 162 Games. 162 Stories. 1 Addiction.
by GENE WOJCIECHOWSKI
list price: $22.95
our price: $15.61
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0385513003
Catlog: Book (2005-04-12)
Publisher: Doubleday
Sales Rank: 2105
Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars
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Reviews (2)

5-0 out of 5 stars Cub Nation Rocks!
A great baseball book by a great writer! Gene Wojciechowski provides true-to-life experiences of an entire baseball season through the 2004 Chicago Cubs. Not just stories about the players, but all aspects surrounding a club throughout the season. All sports fans, not just baseball and Cub fans, will enjoy Cub Nation. Buy several copies for gifts!


5-0 out of 5 stars As much fun as sitting in the bleachers with a cold one
While the 2004 season wasn't good for the Cubs, this book is great for the fans. And not just Cubs fans (although there are plenty of us out there). Gene Wojciechowski manages to show why we're all fans in the first place.

Wojciechowski uses a clever format -- 162 stories (one for each game of the season) on everyone and everything Cubdom from the ballhawks to the beer guy to the umpire's room attendent to the guy who parks the cars to the players to Dusty Baker to stream of Cubs consciousness with Pearl Jam's Eddie Vedder to movie pitches with Bull Durham's Ron Shelton to beers at the Billy Goat -- and it's a book that is impossible to put down.

Told from the fans' point of view -- and it's obvious Wojciechowski is a fan -- it's a book for us, about us, no matter who our favorite team is or where they finished in the standings.

This is a must-read for any sports fan. ... Read more


9. Cinderella Man : James Braddock, Max Baer, and the Greatest Upset in Boxing History
by Jeremy Schaap
list price: $24.00
our price: $16.32
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0618551174
Catlog: Book (2005-05-03)
Publisher: Houghton Mifflin
Sales Rank: 945
Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars
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Book Description

Lost in the annals of boxing is the sport's true Cinderella story. James J. Braddock, dubbed "Cinderella Man" by Damon Runyon, was a once promising light heavyweight for whom a string of losses in the ring and a broken right hand happened to coincide with the Great Crash of 1929. With one good hand, Braddock was forced to labor on the docks of Hoboken. Only his manager, Joe Gould, still believed in him, finding fights for Braddock to help feed his wife and children. The diminutive, loquacious Jew and the burly, quiet Irishman made one of boxing's oddest couples, but together they staged the greatest comeback in fighting history. In twelve months Braddock went from the relief rolls to face heavyweight champion Max Baer, the Livermore Butcher Boy, renowned for having allegedly killed two men in the ring. A charismatic, natural talent and in every way Braddock's foil, Baer was a towering opponent, a Jew from the West Coast who was famously brash and made great copy both in and out of the ring. A ten-to-one underdog, Braddock carried the hopes and dreams of the working class on his shoulders. And when boxing was the biggest sport in the world, when the heavyweight champion was the biggest star in the world, his unlikely upset made Braddock the most popular champion boxing had ever seen. Against the gritty backdrop of the Depression, Cinderella Man brings this dramatic all-American story to life, evoking a time when the sport of boxing resonated with a country trying desperately to get back on its feet. Schaap paints a vivid picture of the fight world in its golden age, populated by men of every class and ethnic background and covered voluminously by writers who elevated sports writing to art. Rich in anecdote and color, steeped in history, and full of human interest, Cinderellla Man is a classic David and Goliath tale that transcends the sport. ... Read more

Reviews (2)

5-0 out of 5 stars Could not put it down
It is the best sports book I have ever read! The author pulled no punches in detailing the amazing story of Braddock. The boxer's highs and lows were vividly portrayed. You could smell the gym, feel the training, and taste the victory. Moreover, the political, economic and social state of the world in those times was marvelously woven into the fabric of the story. This book was truly a joy to experience. By the end of the story, two champions emerged, Braddock and Schaap.

5-0 out of 5 stars This has been a great read!!!
I am in the process of reading this book. It is a great story told by Jeremy Schaap. (Yes the son of the late Dick Schaap)

Jeremy Schaap has done a masterful job of weaving this story together and giving us the cultural perspective that was present in early 20th Century of the United States. As with all great stories there will be a movie made about Braddock. It should have the same type of commercial success as Seabiscuit. Read this book before going to the movie theater because it really does a nice job of telling us about the background of Braddock.

P.S. This book reminds me of how the sport of boxing has changed over the years. Boxing is now perceived by Americans more for its actions in the court room and greed by its promoters. Community identity with a boxer like Braddock is non existant in this American culture. Maybe it is not fair to compare this generation of boxers with those of Ali. Yet Ali stood for something that a society rallied around other than money. You can disagree with Ali but the respect I have for this man is incredible. Braddock might not have talked that much but he represented something that all of us could identify with. Hard work. A work ethic that people could identify with no matter where a person lived, their religion or their race. ... Read more


10. Chapman Piloting & Seamanship (Chapman Piloting, Seamanship and Small Boat Handling)
by Elbert S. Maloney
list price: $49.95
our price: $49.95
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 1588160890
Catlog: Book (2003-09-01)
Publisher: Hearst Corporation
Sales Rank: 30429
Average Customer Review: 4 out of 5 stars
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Reviews (1)

4-0 out of 5 stars Great book "manufactured" and edited in China
This is a great book. It has almost everything. What it does not have, I have not found.

I do have a problem with the book. The number of "typos" is huge. It appears that whoever proofed this book was not fluent in English. The words appear to be spelled correctly; they are just the wrong words. It v. if? "United State" v. United States. I don't know if past editions had this problem, but this one shure does. ... Read more


11. Five Lessons: The Modern Fundamentals of Golf
by Ben Hogan
list price: $12.00
our price: $9.60
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0671612972
Catlog: Book (1985-09-20)
Publisher: Fireside
Sales Rank: 1547
Average Customer Review: 4.68 out of 5 stars
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Amazon.com

Ben Hogan's premise in this 1957 classic is driven home in bold letters: "THE AVERAGE GOLFER IS ENTIRELY CAPABLE OF BUILDING A REPEATING SWING AND BREAKING 80." Religions are founded on less, and Hogan's detailed analyses and illustrated demonstrations of grip, stance, posture, and the two basic components of the swing make up a sacred book. Though its very simplicity seems dated, this is the tome of technique that should serve as the foundation of every golf library. ... Read more

Reviews (78)

5-0 out of 5 stars The authoritave book on the basics
As a kid I took a few lessons from a top notch instructor, and I always found it helpful to think back and swing the way he taught me. Now in my early 40's, after years of infrequent play and bad advice, I lost my game. I read Hogan's book, and realized that it was the Hogan method - grip, stance, everything - that I was taught as a kid. This book was a godsend.

Hogan doesn't just tell you what to do, he explains why. He shows how to make the basic REPEATING swing that can be used with ALL clubs, driver through PW. This makes the game so simple. You can use this book to quickly learn the correct swing, and confidently hit a good shot every time because you know you are doing it the right way. This lets you think less and less about swinging mechanics and more and more about strategy, and the game becomes immensely more pleasurable.

Put this book and a 9 iron by your bedstand, practice as you read it, and you will find youurself hitting with more confidence and consistency after the first chapter.

5-0 out of 5 stars Excellent resource to learn golf fundamentals
Ben Hogan goes over, step by step, the fundamentals of a solid golf swing. Hogan is regarded as one of the all time greats of golf (one of only four golfers to win all the major championships (Gary Player, Gene Sarazen and Jack Nicklaus are the others)). His attention to detail in this book is absolutley incredible. He covers the proper grip, stance, swing plane and everything else for perfect mechanics. There are few people today who would question the value of this book since Hogan's swing ranks as one of the all time greatest swings in the history of golf. This book may be slightly advanced for the beginner. Bryan McDonald Apple Computer 7 Handicap

3-0 out of 5 stars Great book - If you've got a Hook
This classic is an exceptional, readable, and all-encompassing study of the golf swing. I learned much about my swing studying this book. The only problem I encountered was none of the information was very relavant to me or the vast majority of golfers who suffer from a slice.

Ben Hogan had a strong hook and much of this book includes his corrections to overcome this deficit and straighten out his swing. However, for the slicer, these corrections do the opposite - my slice was worse than ever after following Hogan's advice and I couldn't correct it.

An excellent book, for starters or as a follow-on to Hogan's "Five Lessons", is Leadbetter's "The Fundamentals of Hogan". Leadbetter reviews the Hogan swing, then tells why it doesn't work for most (Hogan was double-jointed, Hogan was correcting his hook, etc.) and what you should really do. After Leadbetter, I did straighten out my swing.

Both books break the swing down into 5 parts: Grip, Stance, Backswing, Downswing, Summary.

While Hogan's book was groundbreaking and certainly deserves a read, if you want to learn a basic swing, Leadbetter's is far more encompassing and just as readable.

2-0 out of 5 stars These people sound like golf infomercials.
There's only so much you can learn from a book. Ben Hogan basically invented the modern golf swing but I think lessons would be more helpful. Save your money and go play a round or two, its the best way to improve.

5-0 out of 5 stars Instant Game Improvement
Not to be too overly gushy but this book revolutionized my golf game. I have shot in the 100+ range my entire life (35) and after reading this book a few times and practicing the techniques at the range I instantly started to shoot in the 90's. His instruction is simple to understand and the pictures are a great help to visualize the actions. I know refer back to this book at least once a month if my swing starts to get out of whack. It is the best $10.00 you will ever spend on your game. ... Read more


12. The Men's Health Book of Muscle
by Lou Schuler, Ian King
list price: $35.00
our price: $23.10
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 1579547699
Catlog: Book (2003-10-17)
Publisher: Rodale Books
Sales Rank: 2475
Average Customer Review: 4.52 out of 5 stars
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Amazon.com

You might think that the subtitle, "The World's Most Authoritative Guide to Building Your Body," is hyperbole, but The Book of Muscle from Men's Health delivers as promised. Australian strength coach and former powerlifting champion Ian King and Men's Health fitness director Lou Schuler cover everything you want to know about your muscles and what makes themgrow, complete with dietary recommendations, exercises for every muscle group, and exercise routines. Each muscle group is illustrated and discussed, with 149 pages of clearly described, well-photographed exercises using a variety of equipment. A section on workout routines helps you put together your own program, from beginner to advanced.

Schuler's guy-talk style makes the book enjoyable to read, even on days when you have no intention of going to the gym. The artistic drawings of muscle groups, full-color photographs of beginning and ending positions of every exercise, and stunning close-ups of buffed body parts make The Book of Muscle is as beautiful as it is practical and motivating, an exceptional gift for the fitness guy in your life, and well worth the price. Highly recommended for men wanting to get in shape or stay there. --Joan Price ... Read more

Reviews (27)

5-0 out of 5 stars Most informative and extensive fitness publication I've seen
Lou Schuler and Ian King take extensive scientific information, put it in easy to understand language, and equip the average fitness enthusiast with all the tools needed to achieve his training goals.

This book gives readers a basis in the physiology of building muscle, and then, body part by body part, gives full descriptions and illustrations of exercises to build the body you want. Excellent workouts for beginners or more advanced lifters.

With it's pages of full colour photos and illustrations, interesting presentation, and depth of information, The Men's Health Book of Muscle is easily one of the most comprehensive fitness resources I've come across.

5-0 out of 5 stars Awesome and Jam packed
I have read this book from cover to cover and I'm amazed at the sheer content and concise format in which it was presented. It reads easy so that even a novice can understand the terminology and the advanced lifter will even gain valuable information. The workouts are simply some of the best that I've ever done in my 15 years of lifting experience, and I haven't come across even one yet that can't be completed in an hour or less. Not only does the book layout fantastic workouts, but it gives the reader a plethora of outstanding exercise examples with progressive pictorals in many cases. I am now armed with some of the best information available out there regarding lifting AND nutrition. I definitely recommend this book to anyone who's serious about gaining strength, mass or just plain wanting to look good on the beach this summer. Your lifting library should NOT be devoid of The Book Of Muscle!

5-0 out of 5 stars A Must-Have For Any Fitness Library
As the Fitness Editor for Men's Fitness magazine, I've read more fitness books than I care to remember. It's how I make my living. And I can honestly say that The Book of Muscle is one of the best fitness books ever written. Let me just say that I have no personal investment in this book. In fact, you'll notice that it's published by my competition. But I believe in directing the public to quality material--and this book fits the bill and then some. I have known Schuler and King personally for years, and can attest that they're tops in the fitness biz.

Because of my job, I think I can say with some authority that the writing is superb. Schuler makes complicated physiology seem simple. But let me put it in perspective: I have a master's degree in exercise science, and I wish that this book would have been available when I was in graduate school. It would have saved me hours of boring textbook reading--and I would have learned MORE!

Just as important, Schuler's co-author, Ian King, is known in my circles as one of the best strength coaches in the world. And he backs that reputation up with the highly effective, cutting-edge training programs that are presented in this book.

I highly recommend The Book of Muscle to anyone who wants to:

*Understand the science of building muscle--from the basic functions of each of your major muscles to the secrets of increasing their rate of growth.
*Learn how to do over 100 exercises with perfect form.
*Have at your fingertips months' worth of expertly designed workouts from one the world's leading fitness authorities, Ian King.

So for what it's worth, consider this my professional opinion. I hope it's useful to you.

Adam Campbell
Fitness Editor
Men's Fitness

1-0 out of 5 stars TOTAL WASTE OF MONEY AND TIME
I was unimpressed by every aspect of this book.

The writing's sloppy, the information is basic and (where it stretches) suspect, the photography is so so '70s, the design non-existent.

Buy a set of dumbbells instead of this book. It's an infinitely better investment.

4-0 out of 5 stars Excellent first book
In many respects this is the perfect first book for someone looking to get into regular exercise. More than most other books in the genre, this one seems to have more than a modicum of scientific understanding backing it. The first sections set the tone, going over the actual science of muscles, why they get bigger, and how. The authors know their audience, though, and don't overdo the science. However, if you are going to lift weights then you need some level of understanding of what things work and why. This first section gives you that. I personally would have liked to see more scientific detail and references but understand that that probably would alienate large chunks of their target audience.

After that primer you get introduced to the major muscles and the exercises that target them. There are also sections on diet, warming up, and stretching. While none of these sections are comprehensive, and many have been done better elsewhere, they are done well enough here that it makes the book a viable one stop shop for beginners.

Before you rush out and buy this, though, there are few caveats.

One, the book does not cater to the home exerciser. Depending on how well stocked your home gym is and how creative you are with coming up with replacement exercises this might not be a big deal, but the exercises DO assume access to barbells, dumbbells, and a machine.

Two, some of the exercise descriptions are lacking detail or, in a few cases, plain wrong. The upright row, for instance, shows a form -- bringing your elbows way above parallel -- that most trainers and researchers caution against because it causes shoulder injury in many people. I would expect the world's most authoritative guide to at least mention this.

Three, the routines provided sometimes leave me scratching my head. They give a cadence for things like the push up hold. The description of this exercise says to "hold the position for the specified period of time" yet the actual routines don't specify a period of time. Am I supposed to hold for 3 seconds or 30 or 90? Who knows?

Four, the routines -- at least early on -- take far too long and seem more like overtraining than training. In "Phase One" King prescribes circuit training and by week three you're supposed to be doing this circuit 2-3 times per day, three days a week. I found that doing the circuit twice took me over an hour. Doing it a third time would have pushed me well over 90 minutes of exercise. Throw in warm up and post-work out stretching and you're looking at a solid two hours. This is for "beginners" and they're supposed to do it three times a week.

Later on in "Phase One" King piles even more work on that. Not only are you supposed to do each circuit 2-3 times, you're supposed to do 2-3 reps of each exercise. In week 6, if you do the minimum number of reps, the minimum number of sets, the minimum number of circuits, all with the minimum recommended resting the whole thing will take you 93 minutes. Do that three times a week. This is for "beginners".

While I like the workouts I think this kind of time commitment is more likely to lead to overtraining rather than useful gains. Admittedly later on it looks like King scales back the time requirements but you have to persevere through 8 weeks of workouts that are easily 90 minutes in length. ... Read more


13. Ultimate Flexibility: A Complete Guide to Stretching for Martial Arts
by Sang H. Kim
list price: $22.95
our price: $19.51
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 1880336839
Catlog: Book (2004-01-10)
Publisher: Turtle Press (CT)
Sales Rank: 14033
Average Customer Review: 5 out of 5 stars
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Book Description

Ultimate Flexibility is the book you've been waiting for. More than a collection of exercises or an explanation of technique, Ultimate Flexibility is a complete guide to stretching for martial arts, from the very basics of why you should stretch to detailed workout guidelines for every style and level of martial arts practice.

Written by acclaimed author and martial artist Sang H. Kim, Ultimate Flexibility is your guide to achieving maximum flexibility in your training. Begin with an in depth look at the hows and whys of flexibility and stretching. Learn about the many types of stretching, which methods are best for beginners, when to graduate to advanced techniques and why you should completely avoid certain types of exercises. You'll also find information that you wont find in any other martial art book, including a detailed exploration of how your body works for or against you in your training and how flexibility can make you stronger and faster.

Building on this foundation, Sang H. Kim teaches you nearly 200 flexibility exercises that he has personally used to achieve the highest levels of flexibility. You'l get detailed instructions, workout planning guides, goal setting tips, difficulty levels, injury prevention and recovery, and over 400 photos to guide you. Special bonus sections: 10 Tips for Full Splits, 20 Tips for High Kicks and 10 workouts for specific martial art types.

Includes Exercises and Workouts for:

Core Workout
Warm Up
Cool Down
Light Contact
Full Contact
Grappling
Mixed Martial Arts
Boxing
Weapons
High Kicks
Splits ... Read more

Reviews (1)

5-0 out of 5 stars At Last!
This is easily the best and most significant book ever written on flexibility. Dr. Sang H. Kim provides the reader with a life-long foundation of achieving and maintaining peak flexibility. Brilliantly laid out and easy to follow, this fantastic book will have you stretching immediately, focusing solely on your individual goals and needs. If you have only dreamed about doing full splits, kicking high, or obtaining a grappler's flexibility, this book clearly illustrates the step by step process to achieve these dreams. Ultimate Flexibility is simply superb! ... Read more


14. Wooden
by JohnWooden
list price: $18.95
our price: $12.89
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0809230410
Catlog: Book (1997-04-01)
Publisher: McGraw-Hill
Sales Rank: 2736
Average Customer Review: 4.98 out of 5 stars
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Amazon.com

Coach Wooden's remarkable 10 national basketball championships in 12 years at UCLA speak for themselves. In Wooden, the coach--quiet, thoughtful, and introspective throughout his distinguished career--finally speaks forhimself, and he's well worth hearing. Wooden is a modern chapbook of inspiration and good sense that reveals the hard-court philosopher behind it as a man of character, conviction, decency, and straightforwardness. There are no complex ideas, just little beams of light filtered through anecdotes that project the kinds of simple, immutable truths that in the end touch nothing but net. ... Read more

Reviews (50)

5-0 out of 5 stars A PYRAMID OF SUCCESS
John was truly a team player no matter what his tasks was. He taught many to understand others, but also understand actions in every different situation.Wooden shares his personal philosophy on family, achievement, success, and excellence on every aspect of life. John shares his teachings to others and guides them with wisdom far beyond sports. This book written by John Wooden himself with Steve Jamison will pull you in, as you read a lifetime of observations and refelctions on and off the court, and how great his success was at U.C.L.A as a basket ball coach.
I mostly enjoyed the man's passion for being a better person in life, but also teaching others. He was a man of integrity with great knowledge and wisdom, he created success. What I like most about the book is that in a way to read about John, it is also a learning experience, because you are still learning about his teachings. I most respect on how John took lessons taught as a child from his parents and continued to take them with him in life. I also like how he had a pyramid of success faith and patience were at the top. He was a man of his word, but also the "word," that being the bible.
I do not dislike anything about this book, because there are many different teachings to value. It makes you want to learn more from life everday and how you can make your work that much better. His benevolence is proudly displayed in all aspects of life, but most importantly he also learned from his players as he coached them everday. This shows that not everyone is here to teach, but many are here to listen. As Wooden did so, he lived his life with wisdom, success, and leading to your capabilities

5-0 out of 5 stars A "Wizard", Yes, But Also Human
Having once coached varsity high school basketball for 13 years and having heard Coach Wooden speak at numerous clinics, I can personally attest to the authenticity of this book's contents. It correctly suggests both the man's wizardry and humanity. Jabbar and Walton have almost nothing in common except their talent to play basketball and their love and respect for Coach Wooden. He is proud of them but probably just as proud of hundreds of other players (most known only to him, their families, and friends) who are physicians, educators, artists, attorneys, public servants, corporate executives, entertainers, etc. He set very high standards, especially for himself. He prepared for each practice and each game with meticulous care. He hated losing for lack of a maximum effort but accepted defeat (after a maximum effort) with exceptional style and grace. Anyone who has any association with children, especially those privileged to coach at any level, should read this book. And may I add, anyone who feels adrift in her or his life should also read this book. The "lessons" provided helped to win so many NCAA national basketball champlionships; they also helped to develop the character of those who played on the U.C.L.A. teams which won them.

5-0 out of 5 stars Invaluable Wisdom
This is the kind of book I'll go back to again and again. I got it after finding out about Wooden's "Pyramid of Success" from his website ... I think what I got out of it mostly was the value of being as prepared as possible (for whatever's coming up, short and long-term), and of being industrious... but the latter is a lesson *I* need to learn right now, and others might pick up something else... their particular weakness right now.

So I would recommend it as a valuable "life manual," right alongside books like 7 Habits of Highly Effective People, The Power of Positive Thinking, and Think and Grow Rich.

5-0 out of 5 stars Read this book slowly - there's a lot to think about here.
In my business reading this year, I find myself "flying through" the standard business fare, finding the important points and moving on. Very many business books are written that way. Although "Wooden" is not a business book, I expect a lot of the business crowd will be attracted to the book - John Wooden is mentioned in so many other books about leadership and teamwork. When I began reading this book - dare I say treasure - I realized that my brain began recalibrating to a much slower reading speed, because the content is so fresh, so pithy, and so engaging. I felt as though I was sitting in a room with this great man, listening to him talk about life and basketball. I sensed his delicate and understated humor, his love of poetry, his clarity of priorities and purpose, and found myself wrapped up in the text. This is a book that you will want to read slowly, and read again from time to time.

5-0 out of 5 stars Excellent book for any time of sports fan
I read this book in no time. It constantly brought up different points about Coach Woodens upbringing, work ethic and what he taught the kids at UCLA. The book shows how he was more concerned about bringing the best out of every player instead of the final score. This truly is a great book for any type of person who has in interest in sports. The book is well written and covers all aspects of Coach Woodens life. It talks about how he was just as proud of the teams that won the title in 66'-67' as opposed to the streak of 7 in a row he had because of the circumstances they were dealt with. This is a must read. ... Read more


15. Boatowner's Mechanical & Electrical Manual: How to Maintain, Repair, and Improve Your Boat's Essential Systems
by NigelCalder
list price: $49.95
our price: $32.97
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 007009618X
Catlog: Book (1995-11-01)
Publisher: International Marine/Ragged Mountain Press
Sales Rank: 4764
Average Customer Review: 4.78 out of 5 stars
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Amazon.com

Do yourself a favor: if you own a boat, you should also own theBoatowner's Mechanical & Electrical Manual. Written in a simple,accessible style, the Manual is aimed at helping the nonexpert solveproblems in marine systems--think of it as a friendly mechanic. AuthorNigel Calderexplains how the systems work, helps you troubleshoot and identify problems, andpresents clear and concise instructions on how to repair them. Best of all,Calder also offers helpful advice on how to prevent future system failure.Absolutely indispensable for boat owners. --M. Stein ... Read more

Reviews (23)

5-0 out of 5 stars Don't Wait For a Problem
This book needs to be in your boat, along with Chapman Piloting. This book also needs to be in your hands before you buy, rent, or take responsibility for any boat. It will save you money and time. Most importantly, it may well save your life! Electricity and fuel are not happy together, and this comprehensive reference will tell you how to install or repair any part of your boat's electrical system to make it safer and more efficient.

5-0 out of 5 stars BUY IT
I don't give out many 5 star reviews. But this one definitely qualifies. If you have an electrical or mechanical problem start here. Lots of good, well explained information for those of use who are not experts. This book was a great help in redoing my electrical system, as well as helping me understand numerous systems on my boat. Calder covers how things work, limitations, purchase and design considerations, integration with other systems and practical pros and cons. Would I buy this again? ABSOLUTELY-I can recommend this book with no limitations.

5-0 out of 5 stars If You Could Only Have One Boating Book, this is the One
If you were going to be stranded on a desert island and could only take one CD with you, which one would you take and why? Years ago I used to listen to a program on the BBC that asked famous guests that question, only they said record, not CDs. Well I suppose I'd take Bob Dylan's "Blood on the Tracks" if I were in that fix. And if I were to go to sea on a cruising sailboat and could only take one book with me, it would have to be this excellent, well written book by Mr. Calder. It's big, heavy, expensive and if you need it, you'll be glad you have it and you'll think it's worth it's weight in gold.

5-0 out of 5 stars RV Repair Guide too.
This is a very good book. Too many books only explain what is wrong and then instruct to perform a service without explaining specifically how. This book shows how with lots of illustrative photos and test data and detailed instructions for using test equipment. Practically everything in this book also applies to maintaining RV vehicles and trailers as well. I use it for my boat and RV.

5-0 out of 5 stars Essential Reading for Cruisers
Having completed the our first year as full-time live-aboard cruisers, currently in the Sea of Cortez, we find that this book to be essential reading. The information is presented in easily understandable terms and sufficient detail to assist in solving most mysteries of marine systems. By it and take it with you! ... Read more


16. Golf Annika's Way
by Annika Sorenstam, Golf Magazine
list price: $30.00
our price: $18.00
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 1592400760
Catlog: Book (2004-10-21)
Publisher: Gotham
Sales Rank: 2040
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Book Description

Annika Sorenstam is the world’s greatest woman golfer—a dominant force in the game who hasalready captured a career Grand Slam and become the all-time LPGA money leader. Her rigorousmental and physical dedication has changed the face of her sport, and her fierce determinationand unparalleled preparation have won her tournaments and fans the world over. In 2003, shemade international headlines by becoming the first woman in more than fifty years to play againstmen in a professional event, bringing her trademark game and competitiveness to a whole newlevel.

Now for the first time Annika takes you inside her extraordinary success and shows every golferhow to play and win like a pro. She breaks down the fundamentals of her game and shares herwinning course strategies in one complete, easy-to-follow instruction book.

Golf Annika’s Way features:

•All you need to know about how to use every club in the bag, from fairway woods to shortirons to the putter
• The secrets of the power behind her potent swing, from the essentials of grip and posture to herunconventional form on the follow-through
• Hundreds of full-color photos, including high-speed shots that capture the elements of Annika’spowerful swing frame-by-frame in a foldout spread
• An insider look at the unique weight training and dietary regimen Annika has developed forbuilding a stronger physique—and a longer drive

Filled with insights and stories from throughout her colorful career, Golf Annika’sWay gives you priceless advice from a champion’s perspective. It’s a must-have forAnnika’s millions of fans—and men and women golfers of all ages and skill levels whowant to lower their scores on the course and bring their game to the next level. ... Read more


17. Six Secrets of Successful Bettors : Winning Insights into Playing the Horses
by Frank R. Scatoni, Peter Thomas Fornatale
list price: $24.95
our price: $16.47
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 1932910964
Catlog: Book (2005-04)
Publisher: DRF Press
Sales Rank: 7091
Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars
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Book Description

After interviewing more than two dozen professional players the authors have put together six secrets that all of these successful individuals have in common. ... Read more

Reviews (1)

4-0 out of 5 stars Full of interesting insights
I have read several 'betting psychology' books and, being something of a skeptic, I expected to come away disappointed by 'Six Secrets'.I didn't/wasn't.Since I've gone from tyro to serious amateur, I know this book will help both.Will it help a pro? I don't see how it couldn't help anyone.

Especially useful to me was the almost universal view of those interviewed that, whatever the game (in my case, thoroughbred racing) 'it's one long game'.A winning bet or day doesn't make you a genius, nor does a losing bet or day make you a dummy.Each bet you make is like the flip of a coin: some come up heads, some tails. A single outcome isn't as important as the reasoning which led you to make the bet in the first place.If your overall methodology is sound, if you know why it's sound, if you know yourself and what works (and doesn't) for you, profits should follow.A fair degree of competence at your game of choice is assumed.

My biggest knock on the book is with a couple of those chosen for the interviews; I have known one of them and have friends who have known another.I just don't think that they're as expert or as successful as they are purported to be. For me, this came out in their interviews, which seemed weaker than the rest, as if they weren't really speaking from experience.It might just be my take, though.

Don't think that this book is just a list of rules and homilies. Many other areas are explored in addition to what I found most useful.After a complete read, I think you'll walk away with a good perspective of what makes a winning gambler.

As with most of these self-help books, execution is the hard part....


... Read more


18. Understanding the Golf Swing
by Manuel De LA Torre
list price: $27.95
our price: $22.36
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 1886346518
Catlog: Book (2001-06)
Publisher: Warde Publishers
Sales Rank: 37121
Average Customer Review: 4.18 out of 5 stars
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Book Description

Understanding the Golf Swing will show you a different, simpler approach to the golf swing.Manuel de la Torre, twice named by Golf Magazine as one of the top 100 golf instructors in America is the leading modern day proponent of Ernest Jones’ Swing Principles method of golf instruction. The book includes a passionate Foreword by Carol Mann, Member LPGA, Hall of Fame.

The de la Torre (and Jones) system presents a simpler approach to the golf swing, the emphasis being on the development of a true swinging motion, devoid of energy robbing leverage. In this view, “if the club is used properly the body movements take care of themselves.” This simple statement has the power to bring aobut profound improvements in your game.

While presenting a simpler approach to the golf swing, the book is also a comprehensive resource for all levels of golfer, from the beginner to the professional. It includes:

• The most thorough analysis of ball flights found in any golf instructional book.

• Detailed discussion of special shot play, including sand play, pitching, chipping, putting, and playing unusual shots.

• Coverage of the mental site of golf, effective course management, and a formula for taking your best practice tee shots to the golf course. ... Read more

Reviews (28)

5-0 out of 5 stars Tested in Golf School
Having attended his seminars and studied his teachings for two years, we revised our golf school's curriculm to comply fully with Manuel's approach to the game. Students are relieved by its simplicity and delighted by its effectiveness. As opposed to the typical golf description that is too often dispensed for teaching the game, we call his work "poetry of golf instruction." It is brief, vivid, and gets the job done.

From a discipline that comes from 60 years of teaching, Manuel is very careful with his words and that pays big dividends when reading his book. All of our students buy the book and find it to be a valuable reference.

5-0 out of 5 stars Swing back with the hands and down with the upper arms.
Manuel de la Torre has written a wonderful golf book. His simple method really is simple and it makes so much sense. A number of the reviews here have described this swing as swinging the clubhead over your shoulder with your hands and the club down with you arms. However, de la Torre defines arms as the upper arms and says that the forearms should not take over. I found this very helpful as when I focus on swinging the club down with the upper arms I don't cast or come over the top. When I focus on my arms rather than my upper arms I have problems much more often.

Being able to focus on a simple method to swing correctly rather than on what "mistake" I made is great. If I have a poor shot I simply focus on swinging as de la
Torre recommends rather than trying to figure out what I did wrong. This book is worth reading more than once as there are some subtleties to his simple swing that are worth understanding.

5-0 out of 5 stars Former Apprentice
I worked for Manuel at MCC in 1996, which was my second season as a PGA Apprentice. Prior to that, I had heard mixed reviews about his concept. I asked him to help me with my swing, a sorry 6 HCP at the time, so that I could pass the Player Ability Test, PAT, and move forward in the program. He graciously allowed me to take lessons from him on his "sacred" practice tee. And he allowed me to observe him working with students from beginners to Tour professionals. I have never witnessed anything more awesome in golf instruction than his ability to diagnose and prescribe and then communicate. He possesses a style and skill like no other person I have met. We asked Manuel to write a book like so many before me had asked. He told us how difficult it was to organize and present the concept in a way that would be effective and entertaining enough for people to want to buy. He was working on it at age 75 in his mind. He finally finished it and we should all thank him like we all have thanked Harvey Penick, Ernest Jones, Percy Boomer, and Tommy Armour. This is a book for ALL players. It will take you into a new and powerful "zone" mentally. And free you from the mechanical thoughts so many of us are trapped in. After working with his concept for one summer, usually at night after a 14 hour day, I was able to experience a repeating swing and shotmaking ability that allowed me to come within one shot of obtaining my PAT during that one year. I only want to say that all of us should read and study this concept. "Thank You" to Manuel for his tremendous work. I think it is a masterpiece as do many who have learned from him including Tommy Aaron, Carol Mann, Bobby Brue, Martha Nause, Patricia Kimball, Sherri Steinhauer, and my fellow assistants Bob Pudlock, Mike and Kris. I pray that Manuel will be selected to the World Golf Teachers Hall of Fame in the next few years for all of our sakes.

5-0 out of 5 stars A classic from the "swing the clubhead" school
I think this book is a classic and I recommend also getting the companion DVD; however it does belong to the small muscle swing theory school - an approach that some disagree with. The small muscle school emphasizes the swing through the smaller muscles of the hand and arms rather than the large muscles of the legs, back, hips and trunk.

De La Torre's swing thought is that you swing back the club with your hands over your right shoulder (you DON'T lift the club as another reviewer erroneously remarked) and then swing forward with the upper arms (the portion of the arm between the shoulder and elbow). The rest of the body should move in response to that action. For example, you don't concern yourself with the weight shift. If you swing properly (as De La Torre defines it) and your body is responsive then you will shift your weight naturally and in proper rhythem.

I found this to be a great help because it removes the complication of trying to time the weight shift to the actions of the swing - and it works.

For me.

But I have noticed that just about every golf instruction book works for someone for some length of time. In the end the secret of the golf swing is to learn the proper feel of the true swinging action and to be able to replicate that feel with consistency. Everyone's path to learning that feel will differ because we are all individuals.

Still, De La Torre's work follows in the footsteps of one of the pioneers of swing theory - Ernest Jones. This book and the companion DVD is a great followup to his original theory and anyone who is interested in learning the swing should definitely study this book.

1-0 out of 5 stars Not what I thought
I was expecting a fundamental approach to golf, not here. I did not find any practical knowledge to apply to my own game. If you looking for a story buy this book, if your looking for help with your game......buy hogan...... ... Read more


19. All Those Mornings…at The Post: The Twentieth Century in Sports from Famed Washington Post Columnist
by Shirley Povich
list price: $27.50
our price: $18.15
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 1586483153
Catlog: Book (2005-04-26)
Publisher: PublicAffairs
Sales Rank: 3464
Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars
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Book Description

The greatest sports moments of the 20th Century-by one of the greatest sportswriters of the 20th Century

Shirley Povich was the Dean of American Sportswriters. As a columnist for The Washington Post for more than seventy-five years, he was an eyewitness to the most thrilling moments in American sports, including: the legendary 1927 Dempsy-Tunney "long count"; the celebrated 1938 race between Seabiscuit and War Admiral; the 1946 signing of Jackie Robinson by the Brooklyn Dodgers; Don Larsen's perfect game in the 1956 World Series; the Ali-Frazier fight of 1971; and the murder of eleven Israeli athletes at the 1972 Munich Olympics.But Povich's columns were about more than sports; they reflected the dramatic changes in American society over the course of the 20th Century. Driven by a strong sense of social justice, Povich called for the integration of major league baseball in 1939, and twenty years later he was still at it, attacking Washington Redskins owner George Preston Marshall for having an all-white team.For the 100th anniversary of his birth, Povich's children-David, Maury, and Lynn-and his colleague at the Post, former sports editor George Solomon, have pulled together this panoramic collection of Povich's most beloved columns. The result is a front-row seat to the most awe-inspiring sports moments of our American Century. ... Read more

Reviews (4)

5-0 out of 5 stars The Soul of Sports Journalism
Rarely does a book take me very long to read, especially when its composed of a series of short pieces such as newspaper columns.Journalism isn't supposed to be literature, and sports writing particularly is mainly to give the doggone scores.

Then again, calling Mr. Povich a sportswriter is about as accurate as calling the Pope a good man.

Mr. Povich was the genuine soul of the almighty Washington Post, perhaps the most principled writer ever to grace the pages of any newspaper's sports section.He belongs in the very rare and esteemed company of great journalists such as Cronkite, Mencken, Twain and pehaps a few others.

Yeah, these pieces give you the story.What's more, you get the story behind the story.And it's done in language a 13-year-old can read and understand.

Knowing perfectly well how special this collection is, I read it as slowly as possible.Why rush a good thing?I'm sure Mr. Povich had to fight the daily deadline pressures to produce the work.The least we can do is savor his command of language and keen insight into human character.

5-0 out of 5 stars Like a visit with an old friend
For almost 75 years Shirley Povich was a fixture on the sports desk of the Washington Post. He didn't exactly invent sports reporting, but he certainly help define it in a unique way. His style of reporting, his style of writing created a respect that went beyond sports. He used the sports world as a window on the broader world of America. Sports reflected the dramatic changes in American society over the course of the twentieth century from the depression, to war, to race, to everything else.

The problem with newspaper columns is that they get recycled with the rest of the paper. Only once in a while are a lifetime of columns lovingly collected by people who care (his children and a sports editor) and are published as a book.

If you are familar with the original columns, here is a visit with old friends. If you have not read the originals, here is the way that sports (and maybe everything else) should be reported.

This book is an absolute delight.

5-0 out of 5 stars A Washington Institution for 75 years
An interesting conversation took place the other day. I mentioned to my grandfather, now in his early 80s, that I had just bought the new book entitled "All those Mornings...at the Post." And he responded with, "I grew up reading Shirley Povich."

My response: "So did I, and I am 25." And so did my father. That's the amazing thing about Povich - he linked generations. He wrote about stars from Walter Johnson to Michael Jordan and everyone in between.

As a freelance sports writer, and former sports editor of my college newspaper, the Towerlight in Towson, Md., Povich was my biggest inspiration growing up and I would be willing to bet that most other sportswriters or aspiring sportswriters feel the same way.

I tried to put in perspective to my wife how influential he was. I said he is the Humphrey Bogart of sports writing. He is the epitome of what newspapermen should be and he was just as good in 1994 as he was in 1924.

The amazing thing is he never retired and wrote his final column the day before he died in 1998. This book brings his most important columns to life and for people of my generation we get to live events such as the Senators' only World Series title in 1924 for the first time.

This book is a treasure and is highly recommended to anyone who has ever read a sports column. Chances are the person who wrote the column did so because Shirley L. Povich inspired him.

5-0 out of 5 stars Povich is America
Long live the legacy of Shirley Povich.This book brings to the current generation the work of the best, Shorley Povich. It is mandatory reading for every sports fan!!! ... Read more


20. The Old Ball Game: How John McGraw, Christy Mathewson, and the New York Giants Created Modern Baseball
by Frank Deford
list price: $24.00
our price: $16.32
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0871138859
Catlog: Book (2005-03-10)
Publisher: Atlantic Monthly Press
Sales Rank: 3964
Average Customer Review: 3.5 out of 5 stars
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Book Description

In The Old Ball Game, America's most beloved sportswriter, Frank Deford, masterfully chronicles how a friendship between two towering figures in baseball helped make the sport a national pastime. At the turn of the twentieth century, every American man wanted to be Christy Mathewson. One of baseball's first superstars, he was clean-cut, didn't pitch on the Sabbath, and rarely spoke a negative word about anyone. He also had one of the most devastating arms in all of baseball. New York Giants manager John McGraw, by contrast, was ferocious. Nicknamed "the Little Napoleon," the pugnacious tough guy had been a star baseball player who helped develop the hit-and-run. When McGraw joined the Giants in 1902, the team was coming off its worst season ever. Yet within three years, Mathewson clinched New York City's first World Series title by throwing three straight shutouts over six days, an incredible feat that is often called the greatest World Series performance ever. Frank Deford, a senior contributing writer at Sports Illustrated and weekly commentator on NPR's Morning Edition, recounts the rise of baseball's first superstar, the Giants' ascent into legend, and the sport's transformation into a national obsession. ... Read more

Reviews (3)

3-0 out of 5 stars Not What I Expected
Deford's book touches mostly on the personal lives of and relationship betweeen Mathewson and McGraw. If that's your principal interest, then it's a fine book. But the author says little of substance about the transition from the Deadball Era to the modern game. If that's your principal interest, then look elsewhere.

2-0 out of 5 stars Could have been much more.
I don't want to slam Mr. DeFord. He's obviously a very gifted writer and has made his career. But I was very disappointed in this book. I can only say that I feel a deep connection with both Mathewson and McGraw that this book did not satisfy. It basically reads like what it is - an expanded magazine article with lots of useless color thrown in and nothing substantive about Christy Mathewson or John McGraw that I haven't read any other place. I was hoping for some flesh and blood instead of a bunch of second or third-hand recollections. These men led hard lives with dignity and rage, honor and humiliation, and those vivid tones are only hinted at here. And DeFord's style is too-clever-by-half, enamored with his word play and forgetting to give me the meat. A lesser writer could have done this without injecting so much of his precious infatuation with the quaint language of turn of the century America. As I said, nothing against Mr. DeFord. I guess I was hoping for a deeper, different book.

5-0 out of 5 stars Baseball'sOdd Couple
John McGraw and Christy Mathewson became two of baseball's most recognizable personalities with the arrival of the 20th century. McGraw made his name initially as a third baseman with the scrappy Baltimore Orioles in the 1890's.Mathewson was one of a very few college players, and found himself being tried as a first baseman along with pitching for the Giants when McGraw was brought to New York to lead the Giants for the next thirty years.Author Frank Deford manages to weave together these two diverse personalities as each left their imprint on the game during their short lives.McGraw died at the relatively young age of 60, although his bouts with the bottle made him appear much older than he was.Matty died at the youthful age of 45 due to tuberculosis, probably the result of breathing poisonous gas during a drill among soldiers while in France during World War I.The information provided on the old Baltimore Orioles can be found in numerous other books, most notably for me, Fred Lieb's history on the Baltimore Orioles as well as the information on Mathewson in other books.However, I feel Frank Deford does a good job in tying together the lives of these two giants of the game who became great friends as well.For all his crustiness, combativeness, and profane mouth, McGraw, who experienced tragedy as a young boy by seeing his mother and several siblings die of diptheria, had a sentimental side to him.He hung three pictures in his office of his favorite players (Christy Mathewson, Ross Youngs, and Mel Ott).The last sentence is not included in the book.Following his playing career Mathewson became manager of the Cincinnati Reds.He suspended one of his players, Hal Chase, because he believed him to be involved in fixing ball games.When Matty returned from France McGraw offered him a job as a coach on the Giants, only to find Hal Chase now a member of the team.McGraw had difficulty adjusting to the times as he bemoaned the modern (at that time) player, while the stature of his old Oriole teammates grew with the advancing years.You can find a lot of the information on these two baseball legends in other individual biographies, but this book will bring these two giants and close friends together in one well done (if you will) dual biography. ... Read more


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