Return once again to the timeless account of the Permian Panthers of Odessa--the winningest high-school football team in Texas history. Socially and racially divided, Odessa's fragile economy follows the treacherous boom-bust path of the oil business. In bad times, the unemployment rate barrels out of control; in good times, its murder rate skyrockets. But every Friday night from September to December, when the Permian High School Panthers play football, this West Texas town becomes a place where dreams can come true.
For nearly five years Arthur Agee's and William Gates' remarkable lives were chronicled by a team of filmmakers. Roughly 250 hours of film were devoted to their journeys from the playgrounds to high school competition to college recruitment and -- whittled down to three hours -- it became the award-winning film Hoop Dreams. Now journalist Ben Joravsky vividly brings to light all the richness and subtlety of their stories, and the impact their aspirations had on themselves, their families and their relationships. It is an intimate look, complete with an up-to-date epilogue on the latest developments in their lives.
They were a talented team with a near-perfect record but areputation for choking in the crunch of the state playoffs. Finally, after five straight years of disappointments,the Amherst Lady Hurricanes found they just might have what it took to go all the way. This is a fierce, funny, and intimate look into their minds and hearts during one very special season.
Here is the joyful, inspirational memoir of swimmer Lynne Cox. By age sixteen, she had broken all records for English Channel swims, so she set her goals even higher: She became the first to swim the Strait of Magellan, narrowly escaped a shark attack off the Cape of Good Hope, and was cheered across the twenty-mile Cook Strait of New Zealand by dolphins. Her daring eventually led her to the thirty-eight-degree waters of the Bering Strait, which she crossed in her usual outfit -- just a swimsuit, cap, and goggles. She has even swum a mile in the iceberg-choked waters of the Antarctic. With a poet's eye for detail, Cox shares the beauty of her time in the water in this new classic of sports memoir.
One day Michael Oher will be among the most highly paid athletes in the National Football League. When we first meet him, he is one of thirteen children by a mother addicted to crack; he does not know his real name, his father, his birthday, or how to read or write. He takes up football, and school, after a rich, white, evangelical family plucks him from the streets. Then two great forces alter Oher: the family's love and the evolution of professional football itself into a game in which the quarterback must be protected at any cost. Our protagonist becomes the priceless package of size, speed, and agility necessary to guard the quarterback's greatest vulnerability: his blind side.
It ought to be just a game, but basketball on the playgrounds of Coney Island is much more than that -- for many young men it represents their only hope of escape from a life of crime, poverty, and despair. In The Last Shot, Darcy Frey chronicles the aspirations of four of the neighborhood's most promising players. What they have going for them is athletic talent, grace, and years of dedication. But working against them are woefully inadequate schooling, family circumstances that are often desperate, and the slick, brutal world of college athletic recruitment. Incisively and compassionately written, The Last Shot introduces us to unforgettable characters and takes us into their world with an intimacy seldom seen in contemporary journalism. The result is a startling and poignant expose of inner-city life and the big business of college basketball.