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Seabiscuit rose to prominence with the help of an unlikely triumvirate: owner Charles Howard, an automobile baron who once declared that "the day of the horse is past"; trainer Tom Smith, a man who "had cultivated an almost mystical communication with horses"; and jockey Red Pollard, who was down on his luck when he charmed a then-surly horse with his calm demeanor and a sugar cube. Hillenbrand details the ups and downs of "team Seabiscuit," from early training sessions to record-breaking victories, and from serious injury to "Horse of the Year"--as well as the Biscuit's fabled rivalry with War Admiral. She also describes the world of horseracing in the 1930s, from the snobbery of Eastern journalists regarding Western horses and public fascination with the great thoroughbreds to the jockeys' torturous weight-loss regimens, including saunas in rubber suits, strong purgatives, even tapeworms.
Along the way, Hillenbrand paints wonderful images: tears in Tom Smith's eyes as his hero, legendary trainer James Fitzsimmons, asked to hold Seabiscuit's bridle while the horse was saddled; critically injured Red Pollard, whose chest was crushed in a racing accident a few weeks before, listening to the San Antonio Handicap from his hospital bed, cheering "Get going, Biscuit! Get 'em, you old devil!"; Seabiscuit happily posing for photographers for several minutes on end; other horses refusing to work out with Seabiscuit because he teased and taunted them with his blistering speed.
Though sometimes her prose takes on a distinctly purple hue ("His history had the ethereal quality of hoofprints in windblown snow"; "The California sunlight had the pewter cast of a declining season"), Hillenbrand has crafted a delightful book. Wire to wire, Seabiscuit is a winner. Highly recommended. --Sunny Delaney --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
This book was well written with excellent detail! Had trouble getting started due to all the characters, but a wonderful foundation was laid and an excellent story followed.Published 4 days ago by Sunshine
I've just finished reading this book for the 3 rd time since it was written. Ms. Hillenbrand is an excellent writer who makes history come alive. Read morePublished 5 days ago by Paula K Fontanini
Incredible story.... nothing is so exciting as real history! Enjoyed all the stories of the folks connected to this wonderful horse and the entire horse racing community at this... Read morePublished 5 days ago by Cyndy
This is history not fiction, but it is comprised of dozens of fascinating stories about the lives of those who brought us Seabisquit, perhaps the greatest racehorse of all time and... Read morePublished 9 days ago by BookAWeekMan
Bought this book several years ago. While not a "horse person," but I enjoy seeing them on TV. Read morePublished 11 days ago by J. Blackburn
Seabiscuit's story is just too incredible to overlook. This book provides all the details and is very entertaining. Read morePublished 13 days ago by E. A. Schimmelpfennig
Best written sports book I've ever read. Beautiful writing. The story was very moving and I would recommend to anyone - horse fans or not.Published 14 days ago by James D. Pope
Wonderful story! Great pictures! Well written too. Great buy, good del time also. But the book Secretariat was better. Buy.Published 14 days ago by michele rhoads
Great story and gripping read. Do not think a story about a horse would draw one in and be so emotionally involving, this one is.Published 15 days ago by Gary Rado