The Best American Sports Writing
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The Best American Sports Writing

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3.67 of 5 stars 3.67  ·  rating details  ·  135 ratings  ·  25 reviews
The Best American Series(R)
First, Best, and Best-Selling
The Best American series is the premier annual showcase for the country's finest short fiction and nonfiction. Each volume's series editor selects notable works from hundreds of magazines, journals, and websites. A special guest editor, a leading writer in the field, then chooses the best twenty or so pieces to pu...more
ebook, 320 pages
Published October 2nd 2012 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt (HMH) (first published January 1st 2012)
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Brian DiMattia
Overall a good collection of articles about sports...but.

For sports writing to be considered "Great" it usually ends up being emotional. That means that there's a preponderance of profiles about athletes overcoming personal tragedy, adversity and the odds. Not that there's anything wrong with that kind of story, but it does get repetitive.

There are other kinds of articles in here as well, a surprisingly engrossing one about the modern state of Indian Cricket, for example, and some of the advers...more
Robert
A slightly uneven but generally appealing anthology of American sports writing from 2012. These are generally extended (15–25 pages) profiles or investigative pieces; a couple pieces run to 40+ pages.

Many of these essays explore the often tragic personal costs of sports, particularly those sports, like football and hockey, where repeated blows to the head are an almost unavoidable feature of the game. Of the three or four essays that dealt with the effects of concussions, "Punched Out, the exte...more
Jeff
As I have been reading these past collections of The Best American Series I have had the pleasure of reading some incredible pieces of journalism. The 2012 collection which was edited by Michael Wilbon of Pardon the Interruption fame is one of the best.

As in some other editions the subject of football and concussions is prevalent in a couple of stories. Stories that address the life and death of former Chicago Bear Dave Duerson as well as death of young Denver Broncos star Darrent Williams. Bot...more
Adam Ransom

The Best American Sports Writing 2012 is an excellently written book. The book provides entertaining sports stories that have occurred in the real world while offering an excellent vocabulary choice and a variety of sentence structures. The tales will have readers relate their real life experiences to some of the ones retold in the book while being easy to read at the same time. The author provides us with the authentic experiences of each headlined story in the book, providing the writer's own

...more
Killstorm
As is usual with essay collections there are hits and misses along the way. My favorite pieces included a great item on cricket and its place in India, the nightclub death of a Denver Bronco, and the death of Derek Boogard and the impact of fighting in hockey.

Other items included in this collection varied from well written to plain and rather uninteresting. I found most of the bio pieces on current star athletes to be rather rote items without real appeal. The other essays include:

1) A by the nu...more
Erbower Bower
Full disclosure: skipped right over the articles from Runners World & the entry about cricket. The articles about concussions were great (the problems of the NFL & NHL are only going to get worse. Allen Iverson and Stephon Marbury's tales of exile to Turkey & China respectively, were excellent and sad.
Kirsti
"I never went into a race focused on winning. I went in wanting to find out. That was even how I approached the marathon at the Munich Games. When I ran into the stadium and crossed the finish line, my first thought wasn't, My God, I just won an Olympic gold medal! . . . Crossing that finish line in Munich, I told myself, Yes! I got this one right." --Frank Shorter

To me, the two standouts in this collection are "The Shame of College Sports," in which Pulitzer winner Taylor Branch explains how th...more
Elliot Chalom
This book is like a collection of episodes of ESPN’s Outside the Lines, except without any purpose other than to depress. I only wish they’d ask me to pen a blurb for the jacket: “If you hate sports but you love reading about them, this is the book for you!” I highly recommend The Best American Sports Writing 2012 to anyone who wants to strip sports of everything that is beautiful and majestic and wallow in the worst of it all.

To understand why, check out my detailed review over at http://2bitmo...more
California
I scanned the short stories because I'm reading another book plus doing many other things like training for a half-marathon.
I really liked the story of "Allen Iverson: Fallen Star" by Robert Huber. I learned quickly about Allen's story. Well written and definitely engaging. You must love and appreciate sports to read this great book!
I borrowed it from the SF Public Library. Now I want it on my book case.

~vanessa
Jennifer
Really liked some essays, but I was not as interested in others. Several articles focused on the dementia issues related to concussions in football and hockey. There was also an interesting article on the monopoly-like nature of the NCAA. I think this collection of essays could be used by teachers who employ articles of the day to hook uninterested readers, especially young men.
Andy
Collection of sports stories, which were entertaining to read. One downside to this one was the proportion of stories that included negative things (addiction, death, severe injuries) was particularly high. As a result, what I thought would be a light read ended up being kind of heavy. Most of the stories are well written and interesting, though.
Lorraine
I LOVE this series and am delighted that Sports Writing challenges my expectations. The writers gathered in this volume know what they are talking about, have spent countless hours researching (not just tweeting off-the-cuff)and write with clarity, insight and, at times, eloquence.
Gary Geiger
You think that baseball has problems? Football has problems.
Meredith
I should stop rating books before I finish reading, but this also is a good one so far. The 5 stories I have read so far are so interesting and touching. Especially Wright Thompson's "Why you should care about crickett..." I totally got chills and goosebumps.

R.L.
2.5 stars.

A generally uninspiring collection. Several stories about sports-related head injuries and their tragic aftermath for the athletes who sustain them.

The best single story was by Wells Tower. Funny and insightful. I'll look for more by that author.
Scott
very enjoyable, much better than The Best American Travel Writing 2012. Being a sports fan is not necessary for most of the pieces as they are about people (who are associated with sports in some way) rather than the sport itself.
Richard
Another stellar offering from the "Best American" series. Out of all the sports bios that have not been written yet, it's the epic Stephon Marbury saga that I wanna read the most.
Charles M.
This is always a crowd pleaser, year after year. This edition has much emphasis on concussion/brain injury related stories and a real obvious lack of Joe Paterno/Penn State stories.
Scott
Another great edition of an extraordinarily reliable series with quite a few harrowing stories about the impact of concussions on aging ex-athletes.
Thomas Stevenson
These are really finely written articles. Even those pieces I thought I wouldn't be interested in captured my attention.
Brian
Wright Thompson's India and Cricket piece stands out, as does the Last One-Eyed Hard Drinking sportswriter
Ashley Durkin
Not as varied as last year's collection with NFL concussion pieces dominating.
Wiktor Cegła
Nie oderwałem się nawet od tekstów o krykiecie. Świetne.
Marty
Not as good as the previous year.
Jason Shinkunas
Jason Shinkunas marked it as to-read
Jul 12, 2014
Doug
Doug marked it as to-read
Jun 26, 2014
Joe Giles
Joe Giles marked it as to-read
Jun 21, 2014
Craig Mccall
Craig Mccall marked it as to-read
Jun 07, 2014
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14545
Author of Young Woman and the Sea: How Trudy Ederle Conquered the English Channel and Inspired the World (2009). Since becoming a full-time writer in 1993, Glenn Stout has written, ghostwritten or edited more than seventy books representing sales in excess of two million copies. Stout is also author of The Cubs, The Dodgers, Nine Months at Ground Zero, Yankees Century, Red Sox Century, and has ser...more
More about Glenn Stout...
Fenway 1912: The Birth of a Ballpark, a Championship Season, and Fenway's Remarkable First Year Young Woman and the Sea: How Trudy Ederle Conquered the English Channel and Inspired the World The Best American Sports Writing 2013 Red Sox Century: The Definitive History of Baseball's Most Storied Franchise The Best American Sports Writing 2003

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