The movie leaves out a lot of the facets of this multi-faceted story. Including much of the football history, Memphis background, and Michael oher's personal history before and after he met the Tuohy's that Lewis carefully weaves into the story. There's a lot more here than meets the moviegoer's eye.
I have seen the film and therefore thought I would get the book which might be just as good or better. I even thought as the cover for this book is the same as the film cover it would be the same, but no. The whole book is 10% the Blind Side story about Michael Oher like the film and then 90% the narrator just talking about previous games, plays and other people.
This is in no way what I was looking to get out of it. With 4 hours left in the book, the Blind Side film story had finished. The rest of the book was him just chatting about peoples pay and their plays.
It also didn't help that his voice didn't bring excitement. It was just one level all the way through.
If you are looking to read the Blind Side or hear a good story then don't get this, but if you want a book about old football games then go ahead.
I like Michael Lewis and I like the way he organizes a story. This is the foundation of the movie but it is also instructive about football, the world of football and the people in it. It also has more information about how and why this remarkable story took shape. The narrator is wonderful in so many ways and though he is effective in many different stories, in this case he really paid attention to this story and this language. Many of the best sounds in narration use the sound rather than the reading to perform. This wonderful narration did not get in the way of the book and made the listening a great pleasure.
I enjoyed the history of the game and how it changed. Sometimes it was hard to follow.
How Lawerence Taylor and Wallace changed the game so extraordinarily.
He had a nice soothing voice, a fairly good reader.
While the movie is a good movie, The Blind Side, as with Moneyball, is so much richer as a book. How Michael Oher fits into the ongoing shifts in how players are valued in football is covered to an amazing depth, and also brings a new appreciation to the game that many viewers simply don't appreciate as every play includes one battle in the ongoing war over the line of scrimmage. While not as intense in statistics as Moneyball, the understanding of the reasoning behind the varied salaries of each position is wealth of gaming theory analysis and very enjoyable to listen to.
For those of you who have seen the movie - be prepared for so much more. Michael Lewis is a great storyteller, and he does an amazing job of weaving together the story of an underprivileged kid from Memphis with the history of (believe it or not) the left-tackle position in pro football. As for Stephen Hoye's narration, it is nothing less than pitch perfect. I remember driving home from work with tears streaming down my face as I listened to the part where Michael Oher's childhood is described. Nothing against the movie, an easy, feel-good film, but I'm glad I read the book first. Another winner for Michael Lewis.
Non-Fiction, Science, Tech, History & Business
This book can be taken as a character study of good people thrown into an unusual situation, or as a book for Grid Iron 101 or perhaps even an introduction into the world of Collage Football politics in the US. But it doesn't really accomplish any of these goals well, and instead feels like a collection or articles and essays strung together by a less then compelling narrative.
Read Moneyball by Michael Lewis instead, which is similar in style and approach, but altogether MUCH stronger in execution.
Appreciating the game
I enjoyed that there are 2 story lines: the Michael Oher story and an history of football strategy.
Hoye is a clear and lively reader.
The explanation of what Bill Walsh did for football.
I am not a football fan and rarely watch football games. The Blind Side allowed me to understand some football strategy and that there is more to the game than physical trauma. The historic development of the power (money) positions is fascinating.
Avid reader of classics and fiction, history and well-written genre novels. Music lover and huge audiobook fan.
I shouldn't have been as surprised by this book asI was. Michael Lewis can make any topic interesting, but I am not a big football fan and initially resisted reading this book despite how much I like his work. It really demonstrates that every topic is interesting if narrated with the right amount of enthusiasm and background in the hands of a wonderful writer. The story made commuting fly by. In addition to the evolution of football the author treats head-on many of the issues of racism brought up by the adoption of a young black man by a white family that are addressed more subtly in a fictional treatment like Ann Patchett's 'RUN'. Interestingly, although I am a big fan of fiction, I thought this non-fictional treatment was more effective. The narration was also great. This was a big hit for me and out of my usual comfort zone.
This was a great story that needed to be told. I enjoyed hearing about the struggles and hardships that were endured. The only thing I found hard to listen to was the actual talk about NFL as I am Australian I would liken this to someone from the USA listening to a story about an Australian cricket legend... this aside I did learn about the game and the story itself kept me interested the whole way.