For readers of Laura Hillenbrand's Seabiscuit and Unbroken, the dramatic story of the American rowing team that stunned the world at Hitler's 1936 Berlin Olympics.
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
Knew absolutely nothing about the subject and loved every single minute of the book! engaging story that is well written and a narrator that is joy to listen to.
Yes. The story is compelling There are a plethora of details which are difficult to grasp and remember during one listening
I listen to at least 2 dozen new books each year This is one of my favorites this year.
The story, the tone and the performance were all masterful. One of the best listening experiences I've had to date.
This book moved me on several levels. The story was told with such clarity that I feel I know Joe, his father, his brother, etc., and also that I could smell the wood and feel the smoothness of the boat. I would turn it off and ponder for a while, rewind and relisten, and try to truly comprehend Joe's drive and the others as well. I thank God that he met Joyce and that they shared their lives together. She was a wonderful woman. This is a wonderful book - very well written.
Yes, the mispronounced place names got a bit tiresome to this Washingtonian but the story was riveting. Couldn't stop listening and will recommend it to local friends and family. (Though maybe the dead tree version.) 😀
Little known story of the 1936 8 oar Olympic event as the main theme. The story of Joe moves it forward with the Great Depression as a backdrop, a glimpse into the human pathos during this chapter of our history. Interwoven & integral to the story are the metaphysical aspects of rowing, crewing & athleticism. This is a book that lifts the heart & show us what heights humanity is capable of attaining.
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