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Football: Great Writing About the National Sport: A Special Publication of The Library of America Hardcover – August 14, 2014


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Football: Great Writing About the National Sport: A Special Publication of The Library of America + Why Football Matters: My Education in the Game
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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 484 pages
  • Publisher: Library of America (August 14, 2014)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 159853307X
  • ISBN-13: 978-1598533071
  • Product Dimensions: 6.4 x 1.2 x 9.4 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.7 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (8 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #369,778 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

"I'd take the over on this being the finest football volume of all time. . . . Nearly everything will knock you off the readerly line of scrimmage."
(Colin Fleming, San Francisco Chronicle)

"This fall's load of football books is better than most: livelier, lighter on the lap. Most centrally there is Football: Great Writing About the National Sport, edited by John Schulian. It's a necessary anthology, filling a gap as authoritatively as Red Grange did."
(Dwight Garner, The New York Times)

"The Ultimate Football Reading List."
(Men's Journal)

“Editor John Schulian and the Library of America have produced an exceptional collection. It has long been the accepted wisdom that boxing and baseball are the two sports most likely to be associated with great writing. This book demonstrates that like a lot of accepted wisdom, that contention bears reconsideration.”
(Bill Littlefield, NPR's Only a Game)

“A tribute to the sublime beauty and ugliness of our national obsession.”
(Christine Smallwood, Harper's Magazine)

"Mr. Schulian has collected 44 pieces of first-rate writing, from Jimmy Breslin on Y. A. Tittle to Michael Lewis on Adam Vinatieri. Football fans and fans of great writing will love it."
(The Wall Street Journal)

"Schulian includes press box legends like Red Smith, Jimmy Cannon, and Dan Jenkins in the book, along with some less predictable choices like Fred Exley and Richard Price. All told, it's a memorable mosaic, right down to the final piece by Roy Blount Jr., who finds on a visit to the current Pittsburgh Steelers that you can't go home again."
(Doug Moe, Wisconsin State Journal)

"Editor John Schulian does not turn away from the dark side of football, but neither does he forget the joy, inspiration, and even the humor to be found in the game."
(The Christian Science Monitor)

"It's a powerful package. But what distinguishes it from the usual rah-rah collections that greet every new season in almost every sport, are its surprises."
(Rick Kogan, Chicago Tribune)

"A majestic collection."
(Bob Wolfley, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel)

About the Author

JOHN SCHULIAN  was a sports columnist for the Chicago Sun-Times and Philadelphia Daily News before moving to Hollywood, where he was, among other things, the co-creator of Xena: Warrior Princess. With George Kimball, he co-edited the Library of America anthology At the Fights. He is the author most recently of Sometimes They Even Shook Your Hand: Portraits of Champions Who Walked Among Us.

Customer Reviews

4.1 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

10 of 15 people found the following review helpful By DudeMan on September 3, 2014
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
It is "ok".

I've read half the book and am slowing down. By all means get it and read it yourself but the selections in this book are personified by Richard Price's "Bear Bryant's Miracles". If you want a good look into the mannerisms and thoughts of Richard Price, then you'll enjoy yourself. If you want to understand anything about Bear Bryant, you are going to be disappointed. Most people reading a book like this care more about Bear Bryant.

Most selections are just too short. Grantland Rice is reduced to 2 and 1/2 pages. The 73-0 game is three pages. A large number of these stories clock in under 10 pages. Sure, greatness can come in short passages, but much of this just leads you wanting, esp. if you don't know the context of the event being described. Ironically, the best piece in the book for me at least is the opening intro from Schulian. Now that was interesting.

You want to read great? Get Maraniss's Lombardi book. Or something from Feinstein. Or read all of Paper Lion. But don't listen to me - read this book and make up you own mind.
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Ron Rapoport on September 29, 2014
Format: Hardcover
I found more good writing in this book about more fascinating people and topics than in any other collection in recent memory. John Schulian has gone beyond the stadium floor--and in many cases beyond the writers who cover football for a living--to assemble a superb volume that will delight football fans as well as those who don't know an off-side penalty from a fair catch.
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Charles McGee on December 8, 2014
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Excellent compilation of articles on some of the best from the past! Especially enjoyed Chuck Bednarik's story. He donated a day at our high school on behalf of our new coach working with the linebackers, of which I was fortunately one of the few (pulling guard on offense). This was the Summer of 1952 when he was at his prime. Incidentally, he broke our 20 year old blocking machine by cracking the "springs"when hitting it when he was dressed in a T-shirt & the heavy machine had no padding on the hitting area!
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Meredith Thomas on January 2, 2015
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
For months now, I have been dying to get my hands on this book for myself. From my father, I have inherited my athletic ability, a zest for reading, the love of sports and an amorous appreciation for the game of football. I couldn't imagine a more perfect gift for someone in whose likeness God molded me. I placed my last minute order late Sunday evening on Dec 21st, snagging one of the last few remaining NEW copies for under $20. Free shipping AND guaranteed 2-day delivery? Yes, please. Gift was wrapped and under the tree by Tuesday evening. Everybody Wins. (Read Below)

Affordable, hassle-free, idyllic gift-finding-n-delivering, No Mo' Stress Shopping, Less Cringing Yuletide face making, Nervous Breakdown shaking, Fewer Xanax popping, Holiday headache soothing, Nutbag Devil Mall Shopper avoiding, 2-hr 15 mile traffic-jammed ride home forgoing and A Partridge in a (Happy) Me Tree: Sponsored by Amazon.com.
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