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 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.
A beautifully written story, gently and elegantly portraying an intensely inspiring and moving story of raw courage, incredible perseverance, and astounding depth of character and trust.
This is one of the most inspirational books I have ever read. The life stories of the individual boys are compelling. This is enjoyable for a wide range of age groups. Highly recommend this book.
Fact is often stranger than fiction, and in this case just a fantastic story which has been really well researched.
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