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Publisher's Summary

Lou Gehrig was the Iron Horse, baseball's strongest and most determined superstar, struck down in his prime by a disease that now bears his name. But who was Lou Gehrig, really?

Lou Gehrig is regarded as the greatest first baseman in baseball history. A muscular but clumsy athlete who grew up in New York City, he idolized his hardworking mother and remained devoted to her all his life. Shy and socially awkward, Gehrig was a misfit on a Yankee team that included drinkers and hell-raisers, most notably Babe Ruth.

Gehrig and Ruth formed the greatest slugging tandem in baseball history. They were the heart of the first great Yankee dynasty. After Ruth's retirement, Gehrig and a young Joe DiMaggio would begin a new era of Yankee dominance. But Luckiest Man reveals that Gehrig was afflicted with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) much sooner than anyone believes, as early as the spring of 1938. Despite the illness, he didn't miss a game that year, keeping intact his astonishing consecutive-games streak, which stood for more than half a century.

In Luckiest Man, Jonathan Eig brings to life a figure whose shyness and insecurity obscured his greatness during his lifetime. Gehrig emerges as more human and more heroic than ever.

©2005 Jonathan Eig (P)2010 Simon and Schuster Audio

Critic Reviews

"As my consecutive games streak grew, my curiosity about Lou Gehrig also grew and I wanted to learn more about him and what kind of person he was. Jonathan Eig's book, Luckiest Man, really helped me put all of the pieces together and gain a solid understanding of Lou, both on and off the field. I thought it was a wonderful book that provided insights about Lou, his amazing life and outstanding career." (Cal Ripken, Jr.)
"This is a book for Yankee fans, baseball fans, and anyone who wants to read about a man whose determination and heroism inspire us today." (Rudolph W. Giuliani)
"Jonathan Eig's portrait of Lou Gehrig is as elegant, understated, and powerful as the Iron Man himself." (Jane Leavy, author of Sandy Koufax: A Lefty's Legacy)

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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  • M
  • 08-13-14

Wow! What an amazing story!

If you could sum up Luckiest Man in three words, what would they be?

Truly eye opening!

What did you like best about this story?

Whether a Yankee fan or not, this is an amazing account of one of the best ball players in our history. I of course knew the story of Lou Gehrig, but really didn't know the man. This gives a tremendous look into his life, his passions and his dreams.

What about Edward Herrmann’s performance did you like?

I'm a huge fan of Edward Herrmann's narrations. He really brings this story to life.

Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

At times, I felt myself getting choked up when listening to Lou's famous speech. Show's how fragile life is and how sometimes we just don't have control. Baseball is lucky to have had a man like Lou Gehrig represent this great game!

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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Great story about a great man!

Even though I'm not an avid baseball fan I loved this story of a great man facing adversity.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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must read!

fantastic book! love Edward Herman's narration. highly recommend this book to both non baseball fans and avid fans of the sport.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • JH
  • 07-09-12

Excellent biography - baseball fan or not

The fact this audiobook was brief did not detract from its enjoyment, except when something is good, it would be nice to have more of it. The author does a great job of extracting the important events and evoking the spirit and feeling of the times. Heroism, famous baseball icons, tragedy and a simpler America. The narrator, Edward Herrmann is as usual outstanding at conveying the ideas of an author as if they were the product of his own mind. This is a marvelous book, and it does not hurt having a narrator that can restore one's faith in rational thought just by speaking.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Barbara
  • Buzzards Bay, MA, United States
  • 03-21-12

Outstanding just wish it was unabridged

Would you consider the audio edition of Luckiest Man to be better than the print version?

The print version was unabridged, and from that standpoint, it was better, but this version was excellent.

What did you like best about this story?

A real come from nothing story about a superb athlete, always modest, quiet and a class act.
Lou Gehrig in the prime of his athletic career,was struck by, in my estimation, the worst blow that one can be hit by, an incurable, quickly progressive,totally life alterating disease. In spite of this he continues his life in a different direction. All his life, Lou Gehrig carried himself with grace and class.

Have you listened to any of Edward Herrmann’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

No, but this performance was excellent

Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

The opening of the book was superb, with part of the speech he gave on

Any additional comments?

FIVE STARS for this presentation. Lou Gehrig was a player that all players in every sport should emultate

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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Lou Gehrig As You Imagined Him

This is one book I didn’t want to end. With Edward Hermann’s always masterful narration, the story has such depth and richness. He’s simply the best. The story of Lou Gehrig is one for the ages, and his succumbing to ALS at such a young age is tragic. But he took it with grace and valor. Another Audible classic!!!

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Iron Horse of Baseball

"Luckiest Man of the Face of the Earth," is the epic account of Lou Gehrig's 2,000 consecutive games played as a power hitting first baseman who would have netted 500 career home runs had ALS not snuffed out his life so quickly.

The author also reveals inside stories of Gehrig playing with two great Yankee legends from different Eras. Babe Ruth and Joe DiMaggio.

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The tears kept flowing

July 20, 1960 was not only my fourth birthday but the first and only time I was to attend the House that Ruth Built. But it also started a lifetime interest in the Yankees and the athelites that played there.
My first knowledge of Lou Gehrig was watching, "The Pride of the Yankees", much later. Over the years I have watched that movie countless times but this book kept my eyes continually wet as Lou's triumphs were mine and his tradgic end as well.

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Lucky to have read this...

...and lucky to have a Dad, a Yankee fan who told me the stories of the great Lou Gehrig.

My Dad did not see him play but robbers the stories I was to believe he had. This book builds on the baseball stories but more importantly the lessons of hard work and importance of family Lou showed us and his parents showed him.

I am lucky as Lou was to have two parents that worked hard so that I might have an education and a life greater than theirs. I read the book but listening to this great story and hearing one of the speeches that has become a part of America and our great pastime made it even better the second time around.

If we all live our lives as Lou did on and off the field we too can be lucky.

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The Lou nobodyKnew untill now.

Where does Luckiest Man rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

This is one of the better biographies I have listened to.

What did you like best about this story?

I really liked getting a better glimpse into the life of a very private man so admired by Every fan that saw him play.

Which character – as performed by Edward Herrmann – was your favorite?

Every character. I think Herrmann was an excellent reader of audio.

Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

This book made a tear come to my eye just because everyone knows the ending to his life. I really was sad during the beginning when You hear parts of his speech at Yankee stadium.