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The Bronx is Burning: 1977, Baseball, Politics, and the Battle for the Soul of a City Paperback – Bargain Price, June 26, 2007

4.7 out of 5 stars 9 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

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"Ambitiously conceived, marvelously told . . . Mahler weaves several stories into one grand narrative of the city's death and rebirth. . . . It all comes back, in living color . . . a tour de force."--The New York Times

"Entertaining and illuminating . . . It should not be surprising then that Mahler . . . believed a layered account of a single year in the life of the city, 1977, could sustain a book--nor should it be surprising that he was right. . . . A nuanced portrait of this wild year."--The New York Times Book Review (front cover)

"A rich canvas . . . an excellent new book."--Sports Illustrated

"Compulsively readable . . . Mahler's innocently emblematic figures careen vividly through their historical moment."--The Wall Street Journal

About the Author

Jonathan Mahler is a contributing writer for The New York Times Magazine. He lives in Brooklyn, New York, with his wife and son.
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 376 pages
  • Publisher: Picador (June 26, 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0312427026
  • ASIN: B0058M7USU
  • Product Dimensions: 5.7 x 1 x 8.1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 11.2 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (9 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,709,999 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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By D. B. Zukowski on December 4, 2007
Format: Paperback
Jonathan Mahler's book, "The Bronx is Burning", recalls that time in The City when the city was collapsing in crime and decay, visible for all the world to see on the evening news. Mahler, a writer for The New York Times Magazine, weaves together the story of the 1977 mayoral race, serial killer Son of Sam, the blackout and subsequent riots, and the fractious Yankees who had just signed Reggie Jackson and would go on to win their first World Series since 1962.

Born and raised in the Bronx, I remember that time and those events quite well. As a baseball fan, I was disillusioned by a Yankees team that hadn't won a championship in 15 years and seemed to expend most of its energy fighting with itself and with owner George Steinbrenner.

"The Bronx is Burning" - the title is taken from a Howard Cosell remark during the 1977 World Series broadcast as the aerial shot of Yankee Stadium revealed a nearby five-alarm fire - is a well-documented narrative of the New York City of the mid-1970s. Although the baseball story seems, at times, grafted on, and the subplot of Rupert Murdoch's takeover of the New York Post became more relevant in later years, the 67-chapter, 3-part, 339-page book accurately reflects the experience of most New Yorkers at the time. Those were our day-to-day concerns: crime, the mayor's race, and Steinbrenner's Yankees.

But New York's story doesn't end with Ed Koch as mayor and the Yankees as World Series champions. Mahler leaves the impression that these two outcomes would lead to the turnaround of the city's fortunes and that 1977 was the bottom of the inverted bell curve. Neither is true.

Crime would continue to rise. The murder rate peaked at 2,262 in 1992, a full 15 years later.
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Learned a lot about politics of each mayor of New York as well as the baseball team. And I am a sports challenged gal who loves tennis the best. I really enjoyed the author's way of going back and forth between politics and the baseball.
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A must read for anyone who grew up in the City. This was a low-point for NYC with race driven politics, a pair of losing ball teams, blackouts, riots and a brush with bankruptcy. Throw in the Son of Sam and disco, and anyone who could afford to was fleeing for the 'burbs. Mahler captures the mood along with the gallows humor and manages a happy ending.
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What can I say the book was a great read with a tremendous introspective in on some yankee legends. A great read not only for any baseball fan but also anyone who enjoys a great read. The product was in superb condition as well when I recieved it.
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Format: Paperback
The Bronx Is Burning

Summer 1976. A mischievous killer is on the loose and the Yankees are trying to go from worst to first. The trial for the Son of Same has gone cold. The Yankees are trying to win whatever in takes. Explosive and unpredictable Billy Martin is fried up but more importantly he is threatening to leave the Yankees again but who knows if he is really going to leave. George Steinbrenner is on the verge of cutting every coach on the team until Reggie Jackson comes to town and answers all his critics with his bat. Until Reggie gets into a slump and is on the verge of getting cut when he says the world famous quote "I'm the straw that stirs the drink." Reggie denies this quote to this day. This book taught me about the history but I really wasn't thinking about that because I was so into the book.

I liked this book because I like the Yankees and I think that it is cool to learn about your favorite team's history. I also liked it because my dad remembered when this happened. My dad says that this time was very scary. I think that it is very cool that this amazing book is a true story. I really like how this book ended. The Yankees are the best sport team in the history of sports and this was to me one of the best years of Yankee history.

M.S.
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