The #1 New York Times–bestselling story about American Olympic triumph in Nazi Germany, the inspiration for the PBS documentary The Boys of '36, broadcast to coincide with the 2016 Summer Olympics and the 80th anniversary of the boys' gold medal race.
Daniel James Brown's robust book tells the story of the University of Washington's 1936 eight-oar crew and their epic quest for an Olympic gold medal, a team that transformed the sport and grabbed the attention of millions of Americans. The sons of loggers, shipyard workers, and farmers, the boys defeated elite rivals first from eastern and British universities and finally the German crew rowing for Adolf Hitler in the Olympic games in Berlin, 1936.
The emotional heart of the story lies with one rower, Joe Rantz, a teenager without family or prospects, who rows not for glory, but to regain his shattered self-regard and to find a place he can call home. The crew is assembled by an enigmatic coach and mentored by a visionary, eccentric British boat builder, but it is their trust in each other that makes them a victorious team. They remind the country of what can be done when everyone quite literally pulls together - a perfect melding of commitment, determination, and optimism.
Drawing on the boys' own diaries and journals, their photos and memories of a once-in-a-lifetime shared dream, The Boys in the Boat is an irresistible story about beating the odds and finding hope in the most desperate of times - the improbable, intimate story of nine working-class boys from the American west who, in the depths of the Great Depression, showed the world what true grit really meant. It will appeal to readers of Erik Larson, Timothy Egan, James Bradley, and David Halberstam's The Amateurs.
©2013 Daniel James Brown (P)2013 Penguin Audio
loved this book. provided a winning combination rarely found in a true story-- historical context, character development, a compelling storyline, and an on-the-edge-of-your-seat conclusion.
The book is well-written, incorporate historical events with the human interest side.
Yes, one of his best. Sadly, Mr Herrmann has passed away. He has to be one of the finest book narrators ever.
I liked this waaaaay more than I thought I would. From knowing nothing about rowing (and not wanting to know anything), I learned how admirable, difficult and rewarding it is. I also learned a deep appreciation for those 9 young men.
This is my Book of the Year. I would recommend it to everyone. Sincerely.
(Might contain spoilers.)
I would compare this to a Dickens character, perhaps David Copperfield. For a time, as a child, the main character is bereft of love and without provision.
Wanted to, yes; but we listened in savory bits, completing it within one week.
"Boys" is a piece of history that is about rowing, racing, the crafting of a perfect shell, as well as the 1936 Olympics. Throughout the book, the author repeatedly reveals the perseverance that one person needed to survive. In my humble opinion, we all, Millennials included, would benefit from experiencing what it was like to be a young person with a dream but without any means what.so.ever.
My husband and I often enjoy the experience of listening to a book together and this was definitely one of the best. The perseverance of this man is astounding, and kept impressing me as new details of his life were revealed. There was so much potential in him and finally someone recognized it when it was almost too late. It left me musing about how his life actually changed his/our world - we all have our purpose.
This is a peek into a remarkable piece of American history, 1920-1930s. ~ch
I felt that Brown belabored the building up of Nazi Germany. I was aware that it was bad there and that there were propaganda campaigns against what the Nazis termed the "undesirables." Those could have been shortened as well as some of the turmoil in Joe Rance(sp?)'s life. Other than that it was a great story of how individuals came together to triumph against long odds.
The narrator mispronounced several words which detracted from the read. (Who doesn't know how to pronounce Carnegie?)
This is a beautiful story. Very touching. Reads like fiction. You'll fall in love with Joe Rantz. I was moved to tears countless times. Gorgeously written!
I really like the narrator of this story and the pace of the story itself
He has great inflection and accent
The heartbreaking realization that Joe's family was leaving him behind
I thought the story could be a little long on detail of the boats at times, but it did not detract.
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