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Concussion Paperback – November 24, 2015
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“A gripping medical mystery and a dazzling portrait of the young scientist no one wanted to listen to . . . a fabulous, essential read.”—Rebecca Skloot, author of The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks
“The story of Dr. Bennet Omalu’s battle against the NFL is classic David and Goliath stuff, and Jeanne Marie Laskas—one of my favorite writers on earth—makes it as exciting as any great courtroom or gridiron drama. A riveting, powerful human tale—and a master class on how to tell a story.”—Charles Duhigg, author of The Power of Habit
“Bennet Omalu forced football to reckon with head trauma. The NFL doesn’t want you to hear his story, but Jeanne Marie Laskas makes it unforgettable. This book is gripping, eye-opening, and full of heart.”—Emily Bazelon, author of Sticks and Stones
About the Author
Top Customer Reviews
As for me, several years ago the middle school where I taught was rocked by the news that a young man we had taught had been killed on the football field while playing for the high school next door to us. DeShawn had died in a way the Seattle Times assured its readers was unheard of, a terrible tragedy with little explanation other than that of the coroner, who said he died of a traumatic brain injury. Our in-house football coach, whose frustrated students were stuck playing the “dumb”, safe version known as flag football, opined that maybe DeShawn hadn’t burped his helmet. One of DeShawn’s team members, a friend of my son’s and a frequent guest at our home, considered that DeShawn hadn’t “kept his head down like Coach said”. But the fact is, he was gone, and he wasn’t coming back. Dead at 16.
So I was interested indeed to read about the discovery made by Omalu, the pathologist that by coincidence was in charge of the autopsy of Iron Mike Webster, who played for the Pittsburgh Steelers. But I was equally interested in Omalu’s own story, a man of great enthusiasm and character, a faithful Catholic who used “Gee!” and “Gosh!Read more ›
Concussion, by Jeanne Marie Laskas, is the fascinating story of Bennet Omalu and his struggle to get the NFL own up to the existence of CTE, compensate players with the disease, and--finally--change the rules of football to reduce the chances for head injuries. Although this is definitely a book about Omalu's discovery of CTE and his fight to get the NFL to address this disease, it is mostly a biography Omalu. If you are more interested in the story of science vs. the NFL, you may wish to look elsewhere.
The book is an expansion of Laskas' article, Game Brain, that she wrote for GQ in 2009. The book is engaging from start to finish, a David and Goliath story about a humble man from a small village in Africa who not only became a brilliant pathologist but also had the gumption to go one-on-one with the NFL and won. This is clearly the stuff that movies are made of, and it is no surprise that the movie based on this book, starring Will Smith as Omalu, is scheduled for release on December 25th, 2015.
The fact is Omalu did start from very simple beginnings. His father was a prominent engineer and later became Oba, or chief of the Igbo village of Enugwu-Ukwu in southeastern Nigeria. Omalu's father was determined that his children would reach great heights, that they would expand well beyond a small African village.Read more ›
Wow. What a powerful story.
She writes with a colorful mastery of language. It reads like a novel. She presents complex medical science in an easy to understand manner. And most importantly, she presents the courage of one man to stand firmly for the truth and proudly represent his family name, Omalu, which translates to “if you know, come forth and speak”.
Dr. Bennet Omalu certainly did come forth and speak.
As a player for 10 years (high school, college, and three professional tryouts over two years time), this book frightens me. It was my dream to play for the NFL. I dedicated most of my youth to that single goal. Now I count my blessings that I came up short.
As an admirer of the NFL for most of my life, this story shames me. It’s disgraceful that an institution that grew rich and powerful on the backs of its athletes has gone to such lengths so dishonor them. To walk away from them after they have been ravaged by the game.
As a man who truly loved playing the game of football, I now worry that its days are numbered.
Professor Laskas and Dr. Omalu, thank you for your important book!
Founder, Happy Living
Most Recent Customer Reviews
The accomplishments of Dr Benett Omalu are as awesome as his integrity. Read the book ; see the movie. Read morePublished 18 hours ago by LTCol John K. Swensson
I never gleaned from the mainstream media why Dr Omalu's discovery was different from punch-drunk syndrome. Even they were trying to discredit his work. Go figure.Published 5 days ago by Hank
A very interesting read! I would certainly discourage my son from playing football if I had one that wanted to do so.Published 7 days ago by Pat Schroth
Discovered the real truth the NFL had denied for decades
This young Dr. researched and with courage stood by his convictions and findings
As a football fan, it's disgusting how the NFL treat their current and former players, but what is more disgusting is that people who are researching the same problem, CTE, can't... Read morePublished 20 days ago by Valerie Ullmer
Found the book fascinating. As is typical, money always wins and these studies took way too long to be given credibility. Read morePublished 24 days ago by KLRG
Well written and a story worth telling. Will never watch a football game the same again and certainly won't let my kids play.Published 28 days ago by David Maloni
Very well done on an explosive subject. I happen to know a bit more about this case than the average reader, The book is factual and it gives me a positive reaction since this book... Read morePublished 1 month ago by mack mcelhaney