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"For those who like adventure stories straight-up, THE BOYS IN THE BOAT... is this year's closest approximation of Unbroken....It's about the University of Washington's crew team: "Nine working-class boys from the American West who at the 1936 Olympics showed the world what true grit really meant." --New York Times"If you imagined a great regatta of books about rowing, then Brown's BOYS IN THE BOAT certainly makes the final heat...."--Boston Globe "The astonishing story of the UW's 1936 eight-oar varsity crew and its rise from obscurity to fame, ...The individual stories of these young men are almost as compelling as the rise of the team itself. Brown excels at weaving those stories with the larger narrative, all culminating in the 1936 Olympic Games...A story this breathtaking demands an equally compelling author, and Brown does not disappoint. The narrative rises inexorably, with the final 50 pages blurring by with white-knuckled suspense as these all-American underdogs pull off the unimaginable."--The Seattle Times "Cogent history..., and a surprisingly suspenseful tale of triumph."--USA Today "This riveting tale of beating the odds (and the Germans) at the 1936 Olympics is a rousing story of American can-do-ism. It's also a portrait of the nine boys who first rowed together for the University of Washington, and of the one in particular who made the sport his family and his home." --Parade "This riveting and inspiring saga evokes that of Seabiscuit...Readers need neither background nor interest in competitive rowing to be captivated by this remarkable and beautifully crafted history. Written with the drama of a compelling novel, it's a quintessentially American story that burnishes the esteem in which we embrace what has come to be known as the Greatest Generation."--Associated Press "A stirring tale of nine Depression-era athletes beating the odds and their inner demons to compete at the 1936 Berlin Olympics. You can Google the result and spoil the sport, but that won't dull the many pleasures in Daniel James Brown's colorful, highly readable celebration of a grueling collegiate challenge."--Bloomberg News "Brown's book juxtaposes the coming together of the Washington crew team against the Nazis' preparations for the Games, weaving together a history that feels both intimately personal and weighty in its larger historical implications. This book has already been bought for cinematic development, and it's easy to see why: When Brown, a Seattle-based nonfiction writer, describes a race, you feel the splash as the oars slice the water, the burning in the young men's muscles and the incredible drive that propelled these rowers to glory." --Smithsonian Magazine "Those who enjoy reading about Olympic history or amateur or collegiate sports will savor Brown's superb book..."
The #1 New York Times–bestselling story about American Olympic triumph in Nazi Germany and now the inspiration for the PBS documentary “The Boys of ‘36”
For readers of Unbroken, out of the depths of the Depression comes an irresistible story about beating the odds and finding hope in the most desperate of times—the improbable, intimate account of how nine working-class boys from the American West showed the world at the 1936 Olympics in Berlin what true grit really meant.
It was an unlikely quest from the start. With a team composed of the sons of loggers, shipyard workers, and farmers, the University of Washington’s eight-oar crew team was never expected to defeat the elite teams of the East Coast and Great Britain, yet they did, going on to shock the world by defeating the German team rowing for Adolf Hitler. The emotional heart of the tale lies with Joe Rantz, a teenager without family or prospects, who rows not only to regain his shattered self-regard but also to find a real place for himself in the world. Drawing on the boys’ own journals and vivid memories of a once-in-a-lifetime shared dream, Brown has created an unforgettable portrait of an era, a celebration of a remarkable achievement, and a chronicle of one extraordinary young man’s personal quest.
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