I'm not a big reader, just an engineer with a long commute. I purchased the book because I enjoyed reading "Moneyball" when my daughters played softball. The knowledge from the book helped in the coaching of my daughters, but also in the way I worked with others. I hoped "Blind Side" would do the same, while telling a great story about a loving family and a child, who needed a break.
The "Blind Side" starts with an understanding of how the game of football was changed by players like Lawrence Taylor. Whether you like football or not, this is a great story of how one person affects a system or an industry. LT forced coaches to give greater consideration to their individual offensive linemen, who previously had just been known for being big and heavy. Like "Moneyball", we learn how this simply inequity in the game was discovered and exploited. The change in the game set the stage for a young Memphis kid with a bleak future to become a national prospect.
The story of Michael Oher could be it's own book (and it is, now that he wrote an autobiography). Inside that wonderful story are great supporting characters, the Tuohy family. The book is far more honest about the intentions of everybody than the movie, and for that; it's worth the time to listen. You'll see how Leigh Anne is the key to Michael Oher in many ways, but the one story as remarkable as Michael is that of Sean Tuohy. That's a story hinted at, but never told in the book. What's for certain is Sean Tuohy truly believes in paying it forward. His willingness to help others is obvious, and I suspect part of the reason of his success. Certainly, it was a major part of Michael Oher's success.
As they say, the book is better than the movie, but this one is good even after seeing the movie. Perhaps its even better to see the movie first. If you liked the movie, and you read through this review; buy the book.
First, I understand the complaints of others about Michael Russotto's narration, particularly when compared to book 1's Dick Hill. They are very different voices, but to me, Dick portrays non-English speaking characters better. In the Corps series, I recall hearing both narrators, and I preferred Russotto's Pickering portrayal over Hill's, but I liked Hill's Killer McCoy better. But in the Corps, there were fewer non-English speaking characters, so Russotto wasn't bad. In Blood and Honor, he made all Spanish speaking and most German speakers seem very slow. But what made the experience more enjoyable? The further removed from Book 1, thus remembering Hill's performance, the more I got used to Russotto. In short, wait a bit before listening to book 2 after book 1.
SPOILER: Graham's trip to Argentina. It was almost classic Griffin to have all the key characters magically show up for an important event at the same time.
Not his best
The care and attention by the revolutionaries and later by Enrico Rodriguez to prevent unnecessary harm to others.
Don't listen to book 2 immediately after book 1. Give it a month. Then the narration won't be such a shocking difference.
No. The story was outrageous compared to the previous series. With the exception of Reacher not given full freedom to run about (SPOILER, but only for the first 15 minutes), the rest of Reacher reacting is pretty much him over reacting. The final nefarious plot is poorly built and requires quit a bit of nonsensical bias and huge suspicion of disbelief to seem rational.
No. Because I realize that the Reacher series is about entertainment rather than seriousness. And with one exception, there is very little from one book that spills into another book, which I find disappointing at times (be nice if some of the events in the previous book was used in future books). "Nothing to Lose" is simply a book in the series that could be skipped with no loss.
SPOILER: The company owner stranding Reacher at the Air Force Base. Almost wished the author had some fun with the reader and Reacher, and have Reacher realize he made a major mistake with his over reaction.
I get books for my long commute. For that, it was worth a listen. If you wanted a good book just to enjoy some night or weekend, it wouldn't be worth it.
SPOILER: This whole book is premised on a city wanting to live in privacy in a manner hardly different than Reacher himself. Sure, they have freedom sucking laws that people would consider to be overbearing to liberty, perhaps illegal in civil rights. But if so, its hardly anymore illegal than Reacher constantly lying to people to hide his true identity and thus have his privacy. I kept wondering when Reacher would realize Despair was a town living the Reacher life without being a drifter.
Better than others (in the series)
A bit more history on Reacher. Good questions as to why he remains a loner wanderer that are not really resolved, but at least asked.
Honestly, if not for Dick Hill performing, I probably would have dropped off the series after Reacher was shot in the chest with a .38 within a room, and the round failed to penetrate his skin.
Nope, and didn't. I listen to books as entertainment on my commute.
It's a good book. Worth a credit. One day, I'll try and learn why the author seems to think every law enforcement agency in the US is corrupt, but I got over that by book 4 and just go with the flow. The title just seems to be something to call the book rather than anything really pertinent to the story.
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