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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.
I am always looking for a really good story told well and here you have it! The characters are detailed and fascinating and you will be cheering for them before you know it. Read morePublished 17 hours ago by A. Brinskele
Laura Hillenbrand is a masterful writer. There is so much feeling and imagery together. As a reader one is carried through the story with such thirst and excitement.Published 2 days ago by howard williams
Laura Hildebrand did her research and equestrian took notice. What a treat to have a horse book read so much like a great novel. Read morePublished 6 days ago by Jenna Zouzelka
This story is not just about three characters that appeared to be underdogs and then beat the odds. Its also about a time in American History when our people needed to see hope and... Read morePublished 7 days ago by Daniel laguerre Sr
Very interesting. This book contains many facts I was not aware of and the graphic detail gives the reader good insight as to what life was all about in those days. Good read!Published 10 days ago by samari
I read Unforgiven. Great. So, I thought I would take a ride on Seabiscuit. SO GOOD. It actually brought a tear to my eye when it ended. Life is so unfair. Read morePublished 10 days ago by Samuel Goldfarb
I thought it was a good book and very informative but way TOO LONG. All the background information was very interesting but TOO MUCH. Read morePublished 14 days ago by B. Ringquist