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The Red Rose Crew: A True Story of Women, Winning, and the Water

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3.94 of 5 stars 3.94  ·  rating details  ·  257 ratings  ·  21 reviews
More than twenty years ago, a group of amazing women rowed their way to international success and glory, battling sexual prejudice, bureaucracy, and male domination in one of the most grueling and competitive sports. This gripping story of bravery, determination, and indomitable spirit captures a compelling moment in the history of sports.
Hardcover, 206 pages
Published September 27th 2000 by Hyperion (first published 2000)
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Community Reviews

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Justine Philyaw
Growing up in the post-Title IX world and having gone to an all-girls high school, I am naive enough to have never really thought about female athletes being mistreated. And in the elite, often snobbish, certainly male-dominated world of rowing, saying that the first women rowers were "mistreated" is like saying that a 1000 meter race is "only" 4 minutes. (For the record, the women of the red rose crew rowed 1000m in more like 3:21.) Lots of sports cliches come to mind- the team's indomitable sp ...more
Becky
I think women athletes need more writers of their story. The complexities of lives headed into the sports arena and out of it when you are a women are very intense and compelling- I care for those athletes and how they decide to dedicate themselves to sport.

I thought this book was a good read- not great, but somewhat thought-provoking even as it left me wanting more. I had come to this book by asking a women rower at my gym if she had read Boys in the Boat - which I thought gave wonderful backgr
...more
Veronica Erb
Regardless of my (distant at best) relationship with sports, I was inspired by the persistence of the women and allies of the Red Rose Crew, and I was appalled by the people who denied them the most basic of support.

As I read the team's story, I couldn't help but compare myself to the women. Is there anything I would fight this hard to access? How would I convince people different from me, who didn't want to accept "my kind," that they must? Carrie Graves seemed to have one answer—ignore them an
...more
Joni Paranka
My daughter is a novice rower who talks about ergs and strokes and early morning practices. This book gave me better insight into what they do out on the water. To me, it seems a sport with incredible aesthetic appeal: flat still water at dawn, a team gracefully pulling together, long lean limbs and full body strength...Of course, reading about expending oneself so hard that it makes them vomit took some of the beauty out of the image! But I enjoyed the story and learned a lot about what makes a ...more
Chloe Malushaga
I recommend this book for readers who generally do not enjoy non-fiction and are interested in reading about rowing. At some point this book does get pretty boring… but if you read the beginning of the book you can skip over the boring parts. This book is a great read if your looking for something without a huge commitment; it's easy to pick up and put down
Ruth
A great story, but not nearly as compelling in its writing style as Boys in the Boat. A bit choppy but worth reading! Yeah Title IX... Those of us born too early to enjoy it in high school and college can revel in what those who followed us have done.
Kristin
A great non-fiction account of the first women's international crew team from the US. Good combination of rowing history with the history of the individual rowers, and very engaging story arc. Recommended.
Az
The writing was not always clear, there were topics sentences that failed to pan out.
The story, however, is brilliant. Particularly when put in an international context. The U.S. always claims to be ahead of other nations in their attitude toward women's sports, but it simply isn't true. While the climax of the book is predictable, the follow-up is very interesting. The events that occur at Yale sound brillant.
The cast of characters is presented in a highly realistic manner that encourages one
...more
Joe White
The author is very concise with the storyline and verbal descriptions. Covering multiple personalities through a short timeline while keeping a grip on the reader's interest is very rarely accomplished. This book in 200 pages captures the average reader's interest to describe a not well understood sport/activity that has a very small number of participants in the US. I think that at the end most readers will have a clear grasp of this story, an appreciation for this point in history, and a perce ...more
Sarah
There's a line on the cover of this book that insists people who don't know or care about rowing will still love it. And while I can't come at it from that perspective, I can heartily recommend it to anyone interested in great stories about strong women. It's a vivid reminder of how important Title IX is, and a useful tale for those of us who may take Title IX for granted. I can't believe women athletes were treated that way in my lifetime!
Rosemary
A wonderful book about the first women's 8 to compete internationally. It's amazing to think how far we've come. Title IX opened doors, and then strong bodied and strong willed women like these marched through them to show the world what committed, well trained, talented woke could do. Every rower should read this, as should everyone who loves a good "underdog does great" tale.
Amber
This is a good, well-told story of the first US national women's crew team, how they came together, the different personalities and backgrounds, and their excellent coach. Not overly memorable, but would be recommended especially for young girls involved in sports.
Mcdonnelll
Dec 26, 2007 Mcdonnelll rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: any woman who wants to be inspired.
This book was awesome. It's a true story of the women fighting to represent the U.S. in elite rowing. It's a story about overcoming obstacles and loving the sport of rowing. It really inspired me... as I had recently joined a rowing team the year before I read it.
Audrey
This was a really great read but Boys in the Boat was better. I liked reading about a women's crew team and my local haunts. But, the team never seemed to jell and Carie wasn't really a team player and was probably borderline uncoachable.
Tyann
you can't help but be inspired after this book - especially if you've ever rowed, you can really connect to what they did and how hard they worked - strong women row to win ;)
Tressa
It was just ok... it was nice to read a true somewhat inspiring story about rowing, but it wasn't written all that well. If you're not a rower, I think you'd rate it even lower.
Anna
Beautifully written creative nonfiction with inspirational and engaging content. If you love crew, athletics, or the history of women in sports, this book is for you.
Court
I feel like it's the women's version of The Amateurs... all the more intriguing in that the woman portrayed were among the pioneers in their sport!
Sarah
All about how women's rowing got going on an international level in the 70s after Title 9. Fast read.
Sarah Camp
Such a wonderful read...especially for (women) rowers!
Leonore
Good book for understanding Women's crew
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