New York Times Groupies discussion

The Boys in the Boat: Nine Americans and Their Epic Quest for Gold at the 1936 Berlin Olympics
This topic is about The Boys in the Boat
12 views
Archived Group Discussions > July: The Boys In The Boat

Comments Showing 1-6 of 6 (6 new)    post a comment »
dateDown arrow    newest »

message 1: by Ashley, Bibliophile (last edited Jul 01, 2016 07:30AM) (new) - rated it 3 stars

Ashley (anicholsb) | 132 comments Mod
Feel free to answer/discuss these points or bring up something about the book that you found compelling. Remember that spoilers are fine, just use the spoiler html in case a member isn't ready for the big reveal!

REMEMBER THAT WE HAVE A GIVEAWAY THIS MONTH! By participating in this discussion you are automatically entered to win a copy of Me Before You which we will be reading next month


1. Did you know much about rowing before reading The Boys in the Boat? If not, what aspects of the sport surprised you most? If so, did you learn anything about rowing that you didn’t know before? And if you don’t generally follow sports or sports history, what made you want to read this book?

2. Compare how the Olympics were regarded in the 1930s to how they are regarded now. What was so significant about the boys’ win in 1936, right on the dawn of the Second World War? What political significance do the Olympics Games hold today?

3. Al Ulbrickson’s leadership style was somewhat severe, to say the least, and at many times, he kept his opinions of the boys and their standings on the team well-guarded. Even with this guardedness, what about him inspired Joe and the boys to work their hardest? What strategies did Ulbrickson use to foster competition and a strong work ethic among them and why?


Barbara Gilbert | 21 comments 1. I knew a little bit about rowing because my daughter was on a high school rowing team. It is a grilling sport and takes a lot of upper body training. I can only kayak for about 5 minutes and I am worn out. I guess I should have realized that Hitler would not have been excited about the American team. I read this book almost a year ago for a neighborhood book club. We live on a lake and I guess that was one of the reasons they selected the book. I was surprised by how much I enjoyed it.


message 3: by Ashley, Bibliophile (new) - rated it 3 stars

Ashley (anicholsb) | 132 comments Mod
Barbara wrote: "1. I knew a little bit about rowing because my daughter was on a high school rowing team. It is a grilling sport and takes a lot of upper body training. I can only kayak for about 5 minutes and I a..."

They just started rowing lessons near me as a form of exercise and I honestly considered signing up! My upper body strength also seems to be lacking:) I'm excited to read this one!


message 4: by Ashley, Bibliophile (last edited Aug 10, 2016 01:29PM) (new) - rated it 3 stars

Ashley (anicholsb) | 132 comments Mod
OK, super late getting started here but my book came in at the library on the last day of the month so I have broken down and got this from the library ON AUDIO CD!!! Great so far.


Barbara Gilbert | 21 comments PBS had a documentary featuring the Boys of 36. It was only an hour long so it did not go into their backgrounds a lot. It was shown the night before the Olympics started. It is probably on You Tube.


message 6: by Ashley, Bibliophile (new) - rated it 3 stars

Ashley (anicholsb) | 132 comments Mod
Totally worth the wait. What a story!! One of those very American, pulled myself up by the bootstraps sort of stories with so much heart and history behind it. This is really not a subject I'm interested in but I still enjoyed it. 3.5 Stars and here's my review!

So good!! I'm not sure how Daniel James Brown managed to make a rowing competition (much less five or six of them) so nail biting but he did and I loved it. Listen to the audio CD read by Mark Bramhall and you will be on the edge of your seat. What an amazing life and an amazing race.


back to top

unread topics | mark unread


Books mentioned in this topic

Me Before You (other topics)

Authors mentioned in this topic

Daniel James Brown (other topics)