The historical detail is fantastic. Although, if you're not from the Pacific Northwest, and generally familiar with the area, I could see it becoming tedious. The story is generally an interesting one, and the author propels it forward well. The language can be a bit overwrought and oddly pseudo-spiritual at times. My main complaint is this- the narrator does an otherwise great job, but in a book in which geographic detail and place description is at the heart of the story, he mispronounces way too many place names. Way too many. It can be very distracting.
Excellent true story of the depression era.
How adversity was overcome.
Edward Herrmann has a good clear speaking voice which is easy to understand.. I have eye problems so prefer Audible Books for that reason.
Our hero's family moves and does not take him with them.
The Boys in the Boat is captivating, but the reader of the audiobook mispronounces several of the place names in the Seattle area. It wouldn't have been terribly difficult to call anyone living in the 206 area code to ask how the locals pronounce Alki Beach, Suzallo Library, Issaquah, etc. Someone must have told him how to pronounce Sequim and Puyallup, but it would have added authenticity to the storytelling if he had also asked about the other place names. Otherwise the reader is good and the story absolutely fascinating. I would recommend it to anyone.
From Jesse Owens to Louis Zapperini to the 'Boys in the Boat' - and there are sure to be others...who would've known? I suppose there are countless untold stories from every Olympics...Brown's research is erudite...he brings color to the characters and their situations within the context of the times (late 1890s through WWII) with skill that kept my interest throughout.
Joe (central character)...his family situation and perseverance
Rowing success is the culmination of precise of the entire boat - even one who is 'off' will cost the boat. All effort must be aligned or performance suffers...
As a long-time Audible listener, I have heard hundreds of audiobooks over the years-- this ranks among the very best.
the story centers around Joe Rance, but even the minor characters are well-drawn and three-dimensional
There were so many. It was a compelling story which was masterfully written and paced.
It evokes strong visual images throughout--very easy to imagine this as a movie (in production now, I understand). Would give it more stars if possible. Just great, great, great.
This is the little known story of the gold medal 8 man crew team which won the 1936 Olympics in Berlin (not a spoiler as this is revealed in the opening chapter of the book)
The best aspect of this book is the amazing self made story of Joe Rance, Losing his mother at a young age and left all alone to fend for himself at age 15 he somehow stayed in school, survived on his own and put himself through the University of Washington without any outside help while working, rowing crew and excelling as an Engineering major. Remarkable!! What an amazing and inspirational person!
There are only so many ways to describe a crew race. To those who ever rowed crew this is probably fascinating stuff but most people probably won't really appreciate it so much. There is a great deal of waxing poetic on the grace and beauty of the perfect crew stroke and rowing. A little over the top for me, and there is a lot of it.
Overall pretty good. The narrator does a good job.
Terrific story and hard to push pause. Along the same lines as Unbroken as far as quality writing and I believe it is the same narrator.
My daughter Abby recently married Rich Pocock--- great grandson of Dick Pocock and great nephew of George Pocock -- so it was quite fun to hear their family history!
George Pocock was a dedicated and wise gentleman - and so willing to share his expertise with the world. Terrific mentor to Joe Rantz just when he needed it most.
Yes - but never could fit it in... usually listened when driving.
A heart felt true story of the human spirit and bonding that allows teams to sore to new heights together. How wonderful to imagine all the boys - years later having a reunion row!
I enjoy learning history through personal narrative and the times surrounding the second world war seem to be ripe with story, intrigue, and passion. The bits about the boys' relationship and the bits pertaining to how much the sport changed during their racing careers was most interesting to me.
A la Dickens, this story is long in detail, much of it repetitive. I'd recommend a tighter editor. While descriptions of "swing" and the boat's essence are important details in the story, they are overly referenced and elevated to high prose.
Consistent. Listenable. Pleasant.
No, the story isn't rich enough for that. I could maybe see a short documentary, but there isn't enough interesting material here for a movie or TV series.
The narration was great; straightforward and modulated. The story is riveting. The boys on the boat could be representatives of all various social classes in the country and of their personal and financial struggles during this time. The rise of Hilter and his preparation for the Munich games makes a much too interesting and ominous backgound story.
The way it is written is similar to Seabuscuit and Unbroken. I really enjoyed both books because of that writing style.
He was a good nonfiction narrator: nice voice, good rhythm.
It was a little too detailed for one sitting. Three or four sittings could have worked for me.
A great depiction of the hardships of these college students at Washington University and their determination to get through school and excel at rowing. This story covers the haves and have nots at WU as well as the whole history of the nation and the world during this time. I will listen to it again. Fascinating!