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I Beat the Odds: From Homelessness, to The Blind Side, and Beyond

4.1 of 5 stars 4.10  ·  rating details  ·  4,181 ratings  ·  411 reviews
The football star made famous in the hit film The Blind Side reflects on how far he has come from the circumstances of his youth.

Michael Oher is the young man at the center of the true story depicted in The Blind Side movie (and book) that swept up awards and accolades. Though the odds were heavily stacked against him, Michael had a burning desire deep within his soul to
Hardcover, 272 pages
Published February 8th 2011 by Gotham (first published December 21st 2010)
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Friday Night Lights by H.G. BissingerQuiet Strength by Tony DungyThe Blind Side by Michael LewisAgainst the Grain by Bill CourtneyNever Die Easy by Walter Payton
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I read Michael Lewis' novel "The Blindside: Evolution of a Game a few weeks ago and while I loved the story of Michael Oher the intricate sports/strategy portion of the book left me bored and wanting more about the life of Michael Oher. Now that I have read Michael Oher's personal account I can safely say that THIS is what The Blindside should have been. Michael Lewis's account painted Michael as a dumb teenager that everyone had to poke and prod and help along to get him into the NFL. That coul ...more
In the days of sleezy NFL players like Michael Vick, Ben Rothlisberger, T.O., Tank Johnson and the list goes on, Michael Oher is a breath of fresh air. His book tells the story behind the movie THE BLINDSIDE while Michael was part of the DFS system. The message is extremely positive and excellent studies are noted to give the foster care system a face. In my opinion, there is also a very positive role model message which states don't let your status in life be an excuse for making poor choices. ...more
If you were to see a homeless kid at least six five and weighs at least 300, walking down the street wearing the same clothing he does everyday, would you have the courage to pick him up and bring him into your own house? Well, that's exactly what Leigh Anne Tuohy did in the novel The Blind Side by Michael Lewis. This book is a true story about a teenager that went from nothing to the being a professional football player all because of one person. You may have seen the movie The Blind Side and t ...more
3.5 stars. I really enjoyed this memoir. Honest, upfront, and informative. I was disappointed to learn the inaccuracies of The Blind Side, though I can still, like Michael Oher, appreciate the movie strictly as a movie.
This book is about a man named Michael Oher and how he developed into the NFL player he is today. First off, he had a really troubled childhood he had nine siblings and a mom ( and his mom would be there half the time because she abused drugs). So most of the time Michael and his family were moving from one friends house to another because his mom would be gone and she would come back a week or two later. He always had a difficult time in school, he never turned in his homework and would not eve ...more
I did not see the movie "The Blind Side," but was somewhat familiar with its premise. Mr. Oher felt he had to write this book in order to accurately explain his life, and to clear up some misconceptions about him. The strong message which he conveyed is that, despite his profound gratitude to the family who took him in, he always had the drive to succeed, to not follow the crowd, and make his own way. He felt the film portrayed him as a good deal less intelligent than he is in order to make the ...more
Unless you just completely don't keep up with pop culture in any way (which there's nothing wrong with), you've likely heard of the movie, The Blind Side, based on Michael Lewis's book, The Blind Side: Evolution of a Game. Sandra Bullock won/was nominated for a variety of awards for best actress for her role in the movie. In brief, in case you aren't aware, The Blind Side, is the story of Michael Oher who went from being homeless to being adopted by the Tuohy family and ultimately overcoming his ...more
I recommend this book to anyone who wants to read about an American Dream Come True. Michael Oher truly exemplifies what it means to be a decent, hardworking American. I am not a huge fan of sports, and I never saw The Blind Side; however, I am a teacher and after reading this book I realized how valuable the American Public School System is to its youth. For many children, school offers opportunities otherwise not available to them in their lives. I am so impressed by Michael Oher's incredible ...more
Morgan Crosman
I beat the odds is the inspirational true story about Michael Oher, a boy growing up in a tough Memphis ghetto, and becoming a starting left tackle for the Tennessee Titans. But life wasn't always good for Michael, growing up his mom who was a drug addict and would leave him and his siblings alone for days. Michael didn't really know his Dad, the same as his other siblings since most had different fathers. Michael found out his way out of the ghetto was basketball, where he got into a high schoo ...more
I Beat the Odds was required for our high school over summer 2014. First off, this is not a book I would have picked to read myself if I had the choice. {However, I tend to be a bit picky about the books I choose to read.} I give this book five stars because of the way it touches you while reading it. You can't help but sympathize with Oher, and you take his side as you get through the book. With that being said, in my opinion, it was rather difficult to get into the book let alone through it, m ...more
E Wilson

This was a great title for the book. When Mr. Oher gave the statistics for kids who are poor, foster kids, and kids with no strong family support ever making it to a successful adulthood,I realized it was a miracle that he became such a remarkable person.

Some things stand out in his story. Although his mother was a poor excuse for a mother, he does his best to show the love and respect that the bible teaches. It's hard to imagine a mother locking her children out of their home and disappearing
It must be hard for a shy, modest person to write a memoir, but Michael Oher does a good job of it. He describes his wretched childhood, his adoption into a wealthy family, and his athletic success in high school, at Ole Miss, and in the NFL.

He seems even prouder of his academic successes than his athletic ones; one of his few quibbles about The Blind Side movie is that the filmmakers portrayed him as a slow learner rather than someone who had almost no schooling until he was a teenager. (Altho
I am reading this on my Sony Ereader. Downloaded from the library. I need to get back to the story.

I finished the book this morning. Yeah!
I Beat the Odds is a well written book. Michael tells about his life before he met up with the Tuohy's. He tells his story without portraying himself and his life as poor, poor pitiful me. He is honest, straightforward and forthcoming. He tells about his homelife, his siblings, his mother. Of course, it is different than the movie The Blind Side as Michael men
I LOVED the movie The Blind Side. Did you?

I thought I would eventually get around to reading 'The Blind Side: Evolution of a Game' by Michael Lewis but it never happened. So when I came across this book I picked it up.

I like Michael Oher.

Maybe I'm wrong but looking at his pictures and the things he has to say - there's something really sweet about him and you get a sense that he's truly NICE.

But I suspect a big chunk of the book was pieced together through the research efforts of the "contrib
Gerald Kinro
We have heard of “The Blind Side.” I Beat the Odds,” tells the story in the author’s own words. Michael Oher was born with odds stacked against him: a dysfunctional family, poverty, a mother who constantly made bad choices such as drugs, and more poverty. He grew up as a street kid in Memphis, often not knowing where his next bed and meal would come from. Social workers did their best with the resources they had. His luck turned when he enrolled in a private school. From there he met the Touhys ...more
Emily Driscoll
1. In the begining of the book, Michael discusses the struggles he expirenced as a child growing up in extreme poverty. Michael Oher is currently a professional football player for the Atlanta Falcons, but his life was not easy. In the begining few chapters, it goes into detail about Micheal's childhood. His mother was a struggling drug addict with more kids than she could keep track of. Many nights, she would leave all of the kids for days on end while she was off doing drugs so Michael and his ...more
I read this after having seen the Blindside. I loved the Blindside, but this is better. This tells the true story of Michael's childhood up to the present. He was helped a lot by the family, but that is really only a small part. He set himself apart to begin with by making the best choices he could against incredible odds. He was a truly a wise child. He is a hero, and he has some really quotable lines in this book. Very worthwhile read.

Sorry for the vague review...I read this quite a while bac
Anyone who has read The Blind Side or watched the film should also read this book. Since Michael Oher's story has been told in those other two formats, he basically presents his life story thus far in a summarized form. What is interesting is how the addition of Michael Oher's own perspective fleshes out both versions of The Blind Side. Oher's own views about poverty, social skills, education, interpersonal relationships, government assistance programs and life in the ghetto not only made me con ...more
Davian Ross
The story in this book is an incredible one to read about. The movie is not completely accurate in its description of his life (haha not suprised) but the book told about his struggles in life and how he came to fame. I personally am not a big football fan but this story intrigues me. Micheal Oher who this story is about had a tough early life. His parents were never there for him because his mom was a drug addict and she would never pay attention to him and his dad was always getting in trouble ...more
Holly (2 Kids and Tired)
I saw The Blind Side and I read the Tuohy's book, In a Heartbeat. I was thrilled when I saw that Michael was writing his own story. I love that this is his story, in his words. He shares his opinion about the film and clarifies some points that were inaccurate. One thing that bugged him was how the film made him appear dumb, especially when it came to understanding football. He'd studied and played football for years and knew the sport inside and out before he started playing at Briarcrest.

He ta
Allen Couch
I Beat the Odds is a very good book and tells a lot about his life. The book tells some of his life experiences from being locked out of the house for days because his mother did not want her kids to see her using drugs, to running away from the social workers and trying to escape foster homes, and all sorts of things like that. There were a few parts of the book that I really got into. When I started reading the book I kind of expected some things at the beginning like saying how he lived in ba ...more
Jared Shemper
My reflection of the book that Michael Oher wrote was very inspiring to me because he came from nothing and showed us that people in the ghetto can actually make something of themselves. They can work hard and hang out with the right people and make the right decisions that will help you succeed in life today. Michael however, mourned about how he always wanted to see his mother because the people of the foster care would never let him see her because she wasn’t able to keep children because of ...more
I'm listing this on my Sports shelf (among others), but it's really more about the foster care system, and how Oher beat the odds against him.

The statistics about kids in the system are dismal. Girls are six times more likely than their counterparts to give birth before age 21. Almost 50% of foster kids will become homeless after aging out. A significant percentage never finish high school.

I Beat the Odds describes not only how Oher beat the odds, but also why. He goes into great detail about h
Well, I downloaded this book after 10pm Saturday and today at 11:31 am (Sunday) I have devoured it if that says anything! I was an easy, quick read, well written, insightful and expressive. The book covers Michael Oher's side of things and while I wasn't sure what to expect, as many of these types of celebrity tell-all books end-up being poorly written and somewhat loose in their craft, this story comes off as honest, compelling and inspiring. Read it cover to cover and loved it.The story has a ...more
This was enjoyable to read. I read this after I read the Tuohy's book and the two combined provided a better overall idea of the story behind The Blind Side. Oher tells his life as it was, and as it is. He provides a good look at what it is like living in the ghetto, in poverty, in the foster system, with little resources and hope to get out - basically what it is like for children and adults living that way today. He doesn't want your pity, but he wants you to understand what these kids and fam ...more
"People like to talk about "Cinderella stories," but Cinderella didn't get her happy ending without lifting a finger. She had to show up at the ball, be charming and smooth, and win over the prince. Of course she had help along the way, but ultimately it was up to her to make the fairy-tale ending happen." -- Michael Oher, "I Beat the Odds"

An amazing story of hard work and inspiration. Mr. Oher's poignant story, previously celebrated in The Blind Side, is even more beautiful when told in his own
King  p$
In this book Michael Oher, a professional football player talks about his crazy life and how he ad to overcome so many things that
I thought this book was a good family kinda book.
This story is so classically American. It's hope filled for all the best of reasons.
I was happy to read that Michael's faith in God comes through much more boldly here than the movie ever did. Plus the bits about his life before finding the Tuohy family actually make his story more poignant. Its especially an eye opening read on the foster care system, and low income kids who grow up with absent or barely there parents. It makes what Michael Oher grew up to be, even more special.
It's written r
Luke Russi
Good reads #2
From the Blindside and Beyond
Luke Russi
Miracles don’t happen too often, for Michael Oher the Tuohy family was his miracle. From one day having to struggle to survive on the streets of Memphis to the next day living with a family who pushed him to peruse his dreams. Now an offensive tackle for the Baltimore Ravens. Michael isn’t the most out there because it’s hard for him to look past his past growing up with a crack-addicted mother and no father figure. The Tuohy family took M
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I can't wait to read this! 7 18 Nov 01, 2012 05:25AM  
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I Beat the Odds: From Homelessness, to The Blind Side, and Beyond

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“People like to talk about "Cinderella stories," but Cinderella didn't get her happy ending without lifting a finger. She had to show up at the ball, be charming and smooth, and win over the prince. Of course she had help along the way, but ultimately it was up to her to make the fairy-tale ending happen.” 27 likes
“Don't ever allow yourself to feel trapped by your choices. Take a look at yourself. You are a unique person created for a specific purpose. Your gifts matter. Your story matters. Your dreams matter. You matter.” 17 likes
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