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Luckiest Man: The Life and Death of Lou Gehrig Paperback – Bargain Price, March 28, 2006
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Jonathan Eig's Luckiest Man: The Life and Death of Lou Gehrig offers a fascinating and well-rounded portrait of Gehrig, from his dugout rituals and historic games to his relationships with his mother, wife, coaches, and teammates. His complex friendship with Ruth, who was the polar opposite to Gehrig in nearly every respect, is given particularly vivid attention. Take this revealing description of how the two men began a barnstorming tour together following their 1927 World Series victory: "Ruth tipped the call girls and sent them on their way. Gehrig kissed his mother goodbye." Eig also shares some previously unknown details regarding his consecutive games streak and how he dealt with ALS during the final years of his life. Rich in anecdotes and based on hundreds of interviews and 200 pages of recently discovered letters, the book effectively shows why the Iron Horse remains an American icon to this day. --Shawn Carkonen --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
From Publishers Weekly
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
Top Customer Reviews
It's obvious from the discussion of his upbringing that Gehrig was not a "typical" Yankee star, one who would enjoy the bright lights and fame. As a child, and continuing into his adult life, he was a shy, modest person who wanted only to work hard and do his best. His relationship, or lack thereof, with fellow superstar Babe Ruth, is given a lot of coverage, and is one of the more interesting aspects of the book. Given Gehrig's background and social anxieties, it's not really surprising that he and Ruth (along with other teammates) never seemed to mesh.
While the coverage given to his seasons with the Yankees is comprehensive, it's the anecdotes and off-the-field stuff that really add to the existing knowledge we have of Gehrig. And even when we know towards the end of the book exactly what's going to happen, Eig still manages to present the onset of his illness and eventual death dramatically, without simply playing on emotions. I was surprised to learn that his ALS had begun its onset in '38, and not a year later when he was forced to call it quits.
Eig presents Gehrig well, without romanticizing him or turning his book into a hagiography. While I think any baseball fan will love this book, I don't think being a fan of the sport is a prerequisite to enjoyment. This is a great biography of a genuinely good man, one who always seemed unsure about being in the spotlight. Highly recommended.
P.S.--I don't know why Amazon lists this as from an "Audio CD." This review is from the hardcover book.
As a fellow journalist who routinely deals with rigorous fact-checking, I congratulate Jonathan Eig on one of the most meticulously researched -- and thoroughly sourced -- sports biographies I've come across. I am on my third reading, and each time I soak up something new from every chapter. "Luckiest Man" is a smooth-flowing, well-organized masterpiece that unearths precious new details about this admired, enigmatic, and intensely private figure.
Unlike the gushing Gehrig biographies of yesteryear, Eig goes beyond baseball, the statistics, and myth of the the Iron Horse, or Biscuit Pants as his teammates sometimes called him, to reveal an individual of tremendous character, but entirely human. Gehrig was a misfit. In an era when ballplayers were swashbuckling tough guys, "Columbia Lou" was a sensitive college boy.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Excellently written and a wonderfully detailed look at an extraordinary man.Published 1 month ago by Dana
Gave my husband this book for Christmas. He really liked it....finished it within one week!Published 4 months ago by M. Philips
Everyone loves the Iron Horse, this is good, bit not greatPublished 5 months ago by Ira S. Saposnik
What a rich story of a humble, talented man who was taken far too soon.Published 7 months ago by Susan McElrath
Having not read a book on Lou Gehrig since middle school and wanting to learn more about the man, I picked up this book hoping to learn more about his playing career... Read more