From Library Journal
A companion to A Whole Other Ball Game, in which Sandoz collected women's short fiction on women's sports, this book collects women's essays (and some poetry) on the same subject. The authors of the 56 pieces include Diane Ackerman, Annie Dillard, Grace Butcher, Mariah Burton Nelson, Maxine Kumin, and Jewelle Gomez. Although the book covers the expected wide range of athletics, the writing is so superb that it does not feel as if the pieces were selected just to be representative. Standout essays include Teresa Leo's self-deprecating "Seconds," about her high-school decision to leave her dead-end Pennsylvania mining town, and Megan McNamer's "Longing and Bliss," about the importance of basketball in her life despite its being a boys-only sport in her youth. The few short historical pieces included seem pale by comparison. More suited to public libraries, this book could also be added to women's studies collections in academic libraries. Highly recommended.AKathryn Ruffle, Coll. of New Caledonia Lib., Prince George, BC
Copyright 1999 Reed Business Information, Inc.
This impressive "gathering of women's personal writings focusing on participation in competitive sports" brings together memoirs, essays, and a few poems. The authors range from relative unknowns to Pulitzer winners, and the topics are equally diverse--from the amateur boxer who says she wandered into the sport while looking for "something to get me out of the house" to Annie Dillard, who recalls "walking that famously lonely walk out to the mound, our graveled driveway" to hurl baseballs against the garage wall. All of the contributors write passionately about their sports, whether it's a chubby 45-year-old psychologist who gets a kick out of ice skating or a woman who equates motorcycle riding with youthfulness. For browsing or reading straight through, this collection speaks to anyone who harbors a competitive spirit. Sue-Ellen Beauregard