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Open Net: A Professional Amateur in the World of Big-Time Hockey Paperback – November 10, 2009

4.7 out of 5 stars 19 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Participatory journalist (and celebrity editor) Plimpton delivers yet another insider's account of professional sports; this time, the game is ice hockey. A season with the Boston Bruins is the basis for Plimpton's absorbing personal report of what many consider the most awesomely brutal of sports. The crowds, coaches, athletes' wives and players each have their own stories, and each is recounted in a seemingly effortless, breezy, captivating style. As Plimpton learns his formidable duties as a goal-tender (a position which detailed description and hockey legend explicates is remarkably dangerous and isolated), he gathers the spirited tales and ambience of the brouhaha and brawls that belie the agility and skilland team camaraderieof the game. A winning entertainment for fans of sports, told with warmth and integrity. Photos. Foreign rights: Russell & Volkening. November 25
Copyright 1985 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From Library Journal

In the interest of ``participatory journalism,'' Plimpton joined the Boston Bruins hockey team to learn to play goalie. His sojourn with the Bruins in training camp culminated in a five-minute stint in goal against the Philadelphia Flyers. The book follows the format of Paper Lion and Out of My League , as Plimpton tries valiantly to acquire the skills of the position and comes to his moment of truth with some degree of success. Although Open Net does not have the depth and richness of Paper Lion , it clearly illustrates the difficulty in playing the very physically demanding game of hockey. Jo DeLapo, Queens Borough P.L., New York
Copyright 1985 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 224 pages
  • Publisher: Lyons Press (November 10, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1599218062
  • ISBN-13: 978-1599218069
  • Product Dimensions: 8.4 x 5.4 x 0.7 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 8.8 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (19 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #835,718 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Daniel Byrd on April 2, 2004
Format: Hardcover
As a big hockey fan, and a goaltender, this was just required reading. Yet, it turned out to be more. This well written, quick read was a gas to enjoy and quote. I will be glad to read others by George Plimpton, and I'm already on the hunt for PAPER LION.
I guess thats my ringing endorcement. If I'm looking to read a book on football, the author must be wonderful. Quick, funny, well written, and vastly enjoyable, you wont regret buying this book, no matter what the price.
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By A Customer on September 23, 1998
Format: Paperback
This has to be George Plimpton's best book. I've read this book and could not put it down. If you are a hockey fan, or a George Plimpton fan I highly recommend this book.
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By A Customer on February 1, 1998
Format: Paperback
This book was great! I picked it up about two years ago, and have read it three times since then!
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Format: Paperback
This book was a real joy to read. It was a pleasure to take in George's unique observations as he bravely went where no non-athlete has been before, between the pipes to guard the goal of the famed Boston Bruins.
What makes this book so special is George's lack of prejudice and his ability to tell a story complete with the smells, sights, thoughts, feelings and emotions of being completely overwhelmed by a situation that he has absolutely no control over.
His story-telling is succinct and yet descriptive enough so that the reader feels like s/he is in the room with George, as he talks with players, coaches, hockey wives, fans, etc.
Throughout the book, it amused me to picture George holding a conversation these hockey players - his Ivy-league mesmerisms and accent remarkable proof that he is a stranger in this crowd.
It is impressive that Plimpton is not judgmental in his analysis of this much maligned sport. He has a splendid time in his experiences, and I had an equally splendid time reading his book. Don't worry that this book was published in the 80s, as this is a timeless storytelling achievement.
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Format: Paperback
If you're already a hockey fan, especially one who followed the sport in the'70s (and the Bruins in particular), you should enjoy this truly inside look into the pro hockey world. Plimpton, who also did a stint as QB with the Detroit Lions in the 60's, dons a goalie mask and reports on the wild and wacky life of hockey. If you don't know hockey, this'll be a real eye-opener!
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Plimpton had fun as a participatory athelete and to read of his experiences was fun; this book is a bit light compared to the Golf one or others, but enjoyable to learn more about the hockey stars of past.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Plimpton is at his best in this light-hearted memoir about training with the Boston Bruins. His descriptions of the humor and characters that define the sport are spot-on. As an outsider on the inside, Plimpton gives us a glimpse of what life is really like for these professional athletes.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Open Net is my personal favorite attempt of Plimpton's career as a "professional amateur". Being a huge hockey fan and a lover of his prose, Plimpton creates new wrinkles to the "lunch pail gang" of Don Cherry's Bruins. Written during a time where fisticuffs was a big issue in hockey (before the Great One piled in all those goals), Plimpton does what Plimpton does best - act as a fly on the wall.

From trying to make it as a goalie, to writing about Grapes satorial equipment, to Derek Sanderson and Gerry Cheevers, this is a great read. He always gets credit for "Paper Lion", but Open Net is an underappreciated read.
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