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The Galloping Ghost: Red Grange, an American Football Legend Hardcover – September 10, 2008


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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 336 pages
  • Publisher: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt (September 10, 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0618691634
  • ISBN-13: 978-0618691630
  • Product Dimensions: 1.2 x 6.2 x 8.9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (10 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,035,679 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

"The valuable part of the narrative is a story that many sports fans will not know, or at least know only in outline—namely, the increasing blurring of sports figure and cultural celebrity in the Depression era, especially once Hollywood began to recruit sports stars to turn up in all sorts of B-list productions. That blurring, after all, is what defines sports figures today, and Grange was an indisputable pioneer . . . A useful character study of a figure often overlooked today." Kirkus Reviews

"Puts Grange's great career in the context of its colorful time... Pays worthy tribute to a legend." Booklist, ALA

"Poole is eminently readable, and the accent on Pyle is a real bonus." Library Journal

"A lively, well-written biography of this towering figure. Grange revolutionized the game on the field and his business manager, C.C. Pyle, revolutionized it off it." -- Orange County Register

"...reveals how the game is played on the field, and how it resonates in the wider world." The Washington Post

"[Poole] recounts the rise and tragic fall of the first national star of the gridiron. Poole also lays bare the complex relationship between a prominent athlete and the nation's first real sports agent." -- (Chicago) Sun-Times News Group

"Poole gives us the first major biography of Grange." -- Time Out Chicago

"Football wasn't truly football until the coming of Red Grange" -- Chicago Magazine

About the Author

GARY ANDREW POOLE has written for the New York Times, Time, GQ, USA Today, Wired, and other periodicals. He graduated from Columbia University's Graduate School of Journalism.

More About the Author

Gary Andrew Poole has written for TIME, Esquire, The Atlantic and The New York Times.

Praise for PacMan:

"Gary Andrew Poole's excellent biography of boxing's pound-for-pound kingpin is absolutely worth the read."--Sports Illustrated

"It is an amazing behind-the-scenes look into the life of Manny Pacquiao. Poole had tremendous access while he traveled the world reporting and observing the fighter. The effort has paid off for the readers because the book is brutally honest. Poole takes you on a one-of-a-kind ride into the one-of-a-kind life of Manny Pacquiao."--New York Newsday

"Poole takes you on a journey to Planet Pacquiao and it couldn't have been a better read...I loved the book from beginning to end, it's a fantastic, entertaining and informative read...and I consider it to be as good as any boxing biography my hands have ever touched."--Boxing Insider

"The book is an amazing tale of how a reed-thin Filipino, who left his home in the poorest pocket of the Philippines ("The City of Dust") at the age of 15 to become a boxer, became one of the most recognizable names and faces in the world. I recommend it."--Rick Gosselin, Dallas Morning News

"This is good, one for the ages. It's a fantastic book. It's not the work of a ridiculous fan boy. It's quality. If you listen to me enough, you know I don't endorse books that are garbage."--Steve Bunce, BBC

"PacMan tells the rags to riches story of this remarkable boxer who has begun a journey which will see him transcend the sport. It is a fine biography."--Gareth A. Davies, The Daily Telegraph

"If you don't know Pacquiao's amazing story, Poole will open your eyes. If you know Pacquiao already, Poole will help you know him more deeply. And with a masterful guide like Poole leading you down the path, you'll enjoy the experience immensely."--Tim Starks, The Queensberry Rules

"Offers fascinating insight into the PacMan's crowded life."--The Daily Mail

"The American writer Gary Andrew Poole describes a man of complex and fierce beliefs."--The Guardian (UK)

"Well written and provides fresh in-sight into the life of the world's most-
popular boxer."--The Ring


Praise for The Galloping Ghost: Red Grange, an American Football Legend:

"You can almost feel the hits Grange took from defensive players and nearly taste the mud... This book is ideal for any football fan. I had chills reading [it]."--(Chicago) Sun-Times News Group

"Football's first superstar played with a ballerina's grace and a bull's power, but as Gary Andrew Poole shows in The Galloping Ghost, there was more. 21st-century fans will benefit from his reburnishing of the legend."--Sports Illustrated

"The book is a terrific read."-- Rick Gosselin, Dallas Morning News

"Red Grange may have been the best football player of all time, but hardly anyone talks about him the way baseball fans talk about Grange's contemporary, Babe Ruth. Gary Andrew Poole's new biography fills in the blanks of the life of a football legend."--Bob Edwards, The Bob Edwards Show

"[Poole] traveled the country for two years to meticulously research Grange's life. The book is a quick, lively, unpretentious read that captures Grange's greatness as well as his day, and clearly details his role in the growth of the game. I would recommend this to football fans, as much as I recommended Michael Lewis' 'The Blind Side.'"--Ethan Skolnick, South Florida Sun-Sentinel

Customer Reviews

4.3 out of 5 stars
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Highly recommended for thinking sports fans.
David Saxon
Poole does a great job of discussing the role that Grange's celebrity had on the birth of professional football.
Matt Maloney
My brother said he was surprised at how good this was.
Mother of 3

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By David Saxon on September 6, 2008
Format: Hardcover
Gary Poole has written a compelling book which takes you back to the time when professional football was considered a game for hooligans and derided by serious sports fans. Along with Red, Gary profiles his manager CC Pyle, one of the early agents who made Red and himself richer in three months than Babe Ruth made in a whole year. Highly recommended for thinking sports fans.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Mother of 3 on June 10, 2009
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I bought this for my brother, a history buff, after hearing the author on NPR. My brother said he was surprised at how good this was. He said not so much for the football content, but more about the feel of the era. He said regardless of how interested anyone might be in football or Red Grange, it did a great job depicting this time in our country's history. He is recommending it to others...something he rarely does.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Best Of All on November 18, 2008
Format: Hardcover
The history of football might have been extremely different if Red Grange only pursued basketball and track at the University of Illinois as he had initially planned. It may be far from carrying the moniker of "America's Game."

The importance of "The Galloping Ghost" to the gridiron is legendary, but author Gary Andrew Poole scrambles past the well-trodden turf to deliver a comprehensive biography on the man who made football professional. In Grange's first college game (1923) he rushed for three touchdowns against Nebraska, ultimately gaining 723 yards in seven games and notching a dozen TD's while leading Illinois to a "national championship."

But it was one year later - scoring four TD's in the first quarter versus Michigan - that solidified Grange's name in the "Golden Age of Sports." And in an era when college players were dissuaded by coaches in turning pro - even threatened with having to return their varsity letters - Grange signed with the National Football League's Chicago Bears one day after the end of the 1925 season and embarked on a 19-game barnstorming tour that earned him in excess of $100,000.

A salary dispute between Grange and the Bears led the player - along with his agent, C.C. Pyle, to form their own league - the American Football League - in 1926 to compete against the NFL, with the superstar playing for the New York Yankees. The upstart league lasted one year before folding, with the Yankees moving to the NFL for the 1927 and 1928 seasons, though Grange missed that second year due to a severe knee injury.

Though not the same player after the injury, Grange returned to the Bears (1929-1934) and helped the club to titles in 1932 and 1933.
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful By William C. Plock on September 20, 2008
Format: Hardcover
Reading about Red Grange in Galloping Ghost is more than just a book about a man who was a great football player. Mr. Poole has worked so hard to make us feel part of sports in the 20's and he gives us the road map to pro football's origins and how it struggled and finally took off thanks to Red and his promoter Mr. Pyle. You've heard some of the names; Red Grange, George Halas, Bob Zuppke, Bronko Nagurske etc, now you see how they all became legends. The book also gives you insight into the glory days of college football and puts you in seats of the nation's greatest stadiums, many still being used today.
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Cyrus Webb TOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on November 1, 2008
Format: Hardcover
"A deeply personal account of a part of history that many might not remember or know of but will not soon forget. Poole manages to bring an endearing account of perseverence and responsibility to the page that reinforces what football and sportsmanship is supposed to be all about. Definitely a nice way to end the year: giving the world a present like this biography that is sure to be read, discussed and enjoy for years to come. Bravo!"
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