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Semi-Tough: A Novel Paperback – August 1, 2006


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 318 pages
  • Publisher: Da Capo Press; Reprint edition (August 1, 2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1560258594
  • ISBN-13: 978-1560258599
  • Product Dimensions: 8.2 x 5.5 x 0.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 10.4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (30 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #233,682 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

"A very funny book...It is outrageous; it mocks contemporary American mores; it mocks Madison Avenue; it mocks racial attitudes; it mocks writers like me; and it even mocks sportswriters for Sports Illustrated like Dan Jenkins...[Jenkins's] writing and his ear recall--there is no higher compliment-Ring Lardner, though in different times and different Americas."

About the Author

Dan Jenkins is the author of ten novels, including Semi-Tough, Dead Solid Perfect, The Money-Whipped Steer-Job Three-Jack Give-Up Artist, and, most recently, Slim and None. He has also published seven books of nonfiction, most notably Fairways and Greens and The Dogged Victims of Inexorable Fate and writes an enduringly popular monthly column for Golf Digest. Jenkins is the recipient of the William D. Richardson Award from the Golf Writers Association of America, which recognizes those who have consistently made outstanding contributions to golf. He divides his time between his native Fort Worth, Texas, and New York City.

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Customer Reviews

4.3 out of 5 stars
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See all 30 customer reviews
Dan Jenkins is one of the best sportswriters of all time.
bill kliewer
Not for the prudish, under 16 or the faint of heart - Dan's books talk the way people talk and you get the characters in every way.
William K. Coopman
Semi-Tough is one of the funniest sports books I have ever had the pleasure of reading.
home2houston

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

10 of 10 people found the following review helpful By Scott Ashburn on March 14, 2003
Format: Mass Market Paperback
Without question, Semi-Tough is Jenkins' masterpiece. As a high school kid, I wanted to be Billy Clyde Puckett...the bursts of laughter still erupt each time I pick it up.
Two stud hosses from Ft.Worth, having starred at TCU, find themselves together in NYC and playing for the football Giants. They've got themselves a little old date in LaLaLand with the...Jets in what you call your Super Bowl. Puckett tells the story (in first person) of the days leading up to the game by taking a small tape recorder wherever he goes. Along with his counterpart, one Marvin "Shake" Tiller, and the gorgeous and talented Barbara Jane Bookman, Puckett waxes poetic on everything under the sun, particularly the hypocrisy associated with such an event as the Super Bowl in LA. It's lewd, raunchy, politically incorrect, and about as funny a read as you'll ever find...
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful By "pspa" on February 27, 2001
Format: Mass Market Paperback
It is incredibly politically incorrect, replete with satiric racial and sexist slurs, full of (as an old song goes) cigarettes whiskey and wild, wild women, but despite that, and more likely in part because of that, this is the single funniest sports book ever written. Nominally about two characters from Texas who play for the New York Giants in the 70s, this is wonderful satire about sports, athletes, and life in general, and the fact that it is out of print is mind boggling. Burt Reynolds gave a pretty good performance as the immortal running back Billy Clyde Puckett, but youve GOT to read this book to truly appreciate Dan Jenkins' biting satiric wit.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on April 8, 2000
Format: Hardcover
...check the auctions, check garage sales, check used bookstores in your neighborhood. If you have never read this before, this is quite simply one of the funniest books ever written. Do not let the horrible movie from 1977 that was adapted from this fool you - this is nothing less than a minor classic about the New York Giants, told 'first person' by the star running back, as 'hype week' ensues before their big Super Bowl showdown with their crosstown rivals, the Jets. Leading up to the game, we are treated 'firsthand' to many lewd and vivid stories of wild parties right out of what can only be the '70s, loose women (also right out of what can only be the '70s), and all around male bonding as the team stands on the verge of it's finest hour. It is funny how nearly 30 years later, the somewhat jaded underlying subtext of the business side of professional football still rings true in many instaces, and in many other examples we see that things in professional sports have definetely become more complicated and bottom line oriented here in real life in the early 21st Century. WARNING: definetely NOT a book for the easily offended! As funny as it is, some of the text seems like it was lifted right out of the raunchiest issues of Hustler. Not to mention that this book is filled with some of the most un-politically correct racial slurs of all time, and the race card is indeed a recurring issue throughout the book (the star RB who is supposedly 'writing' the book is a white guy), once again showing the era that it was written in as being a much different time. Buyer Beware!
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on August 12, 1999
Format: Mass Market Paperback
I was just shopping for "Life Its Ownself" for a friend who works in a college sports program -- I thought he could relate to T.J. Lambert, the coach. I was surprised and saddened to see it's out of print, but "Semi-Tough," too?!? What treachery.
I've read most of Dan Jenkins' books, and although "Dead Solid Perfect" is my favorite, "Semi-Tough" was my first love. I first read it in high-school, too. Although I never did have any illusions that I was anything like Barbara Jane (yes, I am female!) we all have to have something to aim for, don't we?!? Mr. Jenkins, long may you wave.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on June 24, 1998
Format: Hardcover
Take your great stylists of humor today -- your Molly Ivins, your Bob Shacochis, your Carrie Fisher, some would say your Dave Barry, you get the idea -- take those great writers and know that Dan Jenkins is second to none of them in creating his own universe of language, a convincing land where jocular wit reigns and finely drawn characters live, where the fun is wild but never eclipsed by love. Jenkins shows off best in "Semi-Tough," about ready for revival as a piece of hilarious '70s nostalgia. It's the story of a woman and her two lifetime friends, both Giants stars about to play the Super Bowl. It's told by Billy Clyde, taping some comments for a game-week diary with a hilarious casual honesty and the best eye for detail a reader could want. While the redneck backdrop and the laughing, cynical use of sexist, homosexist, ethnic and especially racist slurs might get hard to read even in this context, the ribald high-life and football hype life are a constant, sly hoot. Most important, though, is the subtly drawn family of friends at the book's center; love has seldom gotten such an affectionate treatment without too much sweetener. Careful readers will find layers of psychological meaning revealed in Billy Clyde's monologues, giving this book a depth to go along with its colorful lifestyles of the studs. If you're a football fan, or if you're a friendship fan, or if you just like to laugh out loud while you read a tightly paced book, "Semi-Tough" has got something for you. Join the readers who know this little book is one of the unheralded gems.
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