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
I've been listening to this book for the past couple of weeks just as we get ready to participate in the 2016 Olympic Games. It was inspirational and well written and read. Oh to have been a fly on the wall when Hitler realised his team had been beaten even though he tried to give the Americans every disadvantage.
This book also serves as a reminder this political season to be wary of individuals who are autocratic and believe they alone can save a country.
Clean books please
Completely draws you in to the historical context and the serious events surrounding these Olympic Games. The sheer grit of each of the young men is particularly inspirational.
Don't let the title deceive you. More than the 1936 Olympics, this story is about perseverance and the indescribable bond shared by nine men. I can't recommend this title enough. It's poetry.
The overall story is great and I liked the narrator, but the book gets tedious at times with some of the details. It's one I wish I would have read instead because I could have skimmed some of the more tedious parts.
Very much a feel good story, enjoyed the history lessons interspersed throughout the book. Another example of why those growing up in America during the depression era are referred to as the greatest generation.
My dad and I listened to this book from the valley to the CA north coast, there and back. The narrator did such an amazing job. What an amazing story. I loved hearing about how different life was like back then and was truly inspired by the boys in the boat!
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