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Tennis Saves: Stewart Orphans Take World by Racket Paperback – December 12, 2012

4.2 out of 5 stars 9 customer reviews

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About the Author

Paul McGuire had a classical education taught by Benedictine monks at St. Gregory’s High School and College in Oklahoma. He joined the faculty as Brother Hilary, named after the famed Bishop Hilary of Poitiers, France. Apart from academics, he was a protégé of Paul Duffield, dean of Oklahoma tennis. Mr. Duffield coached Patsy Rippy who played twice at Forest Hills in some of the same tournaments as Pat Stewart. While heading the math department, Hilary started men’s and women’s tennis teams at Saint Gregory’s (Back Cover Photo) and spent two summers coaching at the Kings Highway Tennis Club in Brooklyn, New York. Brother Hilary was always looking for ways to broaden the lives of his students. In 1970, he was inspired by a production in Texas to create his own theatrical version of the rock opera “Tommy” by permission of The Who. It was similar to the music videos of today with the actors adding dance and drama to the music. “Tommy” was not professionally produced until the Seattle Opera did so in 1971. Hilary developed a line of unique and philosophical sculptures, employing the medium of antique iron from Oklahoma farm equipment and railroad steel. These are reflective of his philosophy background and the approach he uses in teaching math. His most notable piece, "Justice?," appeared in a full-page photo with the artist in Southwest Art magazine, March 1977. After ten years teaching math and tennis in Oklahoma, Hilary was sent to teach math and English in East LA. He started a National Junior Tennis League team with the organizational backing of Gussy Moran. Local Chicano gang members joined his private school students and learned discipline the fun way. At the same time, he founded the tennis team at Cantwell High School in nearby Montebello. After two years in LA, his teaching continued in Oklahoma where he coached his men’s team to a mid-pack showing at the Junior College Nationals in Ocala, Florida. For his 15 years of gratis work promoting tennis, Hilary was awarded an honorary life membership in the USPTA. Since leaving the monastic life, Mr. McGuire has taught math and some tennis for the San Diego Community College District. He met his wife of 30 years on a tennis court in San Diego. They have three grown children and enjoy playing tennis together on local courts. His work with the gangs in East Los Angeles as a monk and later as a math teacher at San Diego City College forms the basis for his first two books.
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 298 pages
  • Publisher: CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform (December 12, 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1479240540
  • ISBN-13: 978-1479240548
  • Product Dimensions: 6.7 x 0.7 x 9.6 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (9 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #3,204,780 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
This fascinating story of a pair of talented and highly resourceful sisters could not have been more aptly titled. Tennis Saves, indeed. Pat and Pam Stewart sprang from humble beginnings and lobbed their way through the ranks of life on an erratic yet upward climb. At an early age these two girls launched their careers on the dirt courts of public parks in the Mid West, swinging borrowed rackets and sporting donated shoes while playing in local tournaments. Little did they know that years later, the Stewart sisters would be successfully competing internationally and coaching at chic and tony tennis resorts. In this work of nonfiction, author Hilary McGuire skillfully weaves the intricate details of their lives into a cohesive account, incorporating dozens of colorful characters including prominent athletes, politicians, stage and film celebrities, composers and musicians, wealthy corporate moguls and other star studded luminaries of the era. Personally, I was intrigued by the Stewarts' survival instincts and the occasionally unorthodox methods by which they managed to stay afloat in a sea of opportunities and uncertainties. These amazing ladies hustled both on and off the court. This book is a thorough resource for tennis fans and sports historians, serving as an invaluable collection of lively anecdotes and vintage photographs. Without Mr. McGuire's carefully archived minutia of events and personalities, the story of Pam and Pat Stewart would have otherwise been eventually lost forever. Kudos to the author for artfully documenting two lives which were, quite literally, saved by the salvation of the sport of tennis.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
To think that two "ordinary" girls could experience such an amazing life boggles my mind. To set off on an "adventure" in an era when they did with relatively no "plan B" that would take them into a fantasy that most people would feel special to experience only one of their bold undertakings. Andwhat adventures they were! Thank you for another angle of our recent history.

I highly recommend this book to anyone who wants to look at playing the game of life "on the courts" from declaring the possibility of your life in spite of the circumstances that one is surrounded by. I am inspired by two women that took on the world and their lives with courage in a time when it was not acceptable.

Enjoyable and easy to read. I recommend it highly.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
This amazing story gives readers hope that no matter how meager your beginnings, you can achieve anything in life! From orphans to tennis stars! Who would dream of being given this life? The courage, trials and hardship that these girls endured is so aptly brought to life by the author! A truly enjoyable read.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
The Stewart sisters spent their formative years in America against a backdrop of severe economic depression followed by world war, while at home in Indiana they faced abuse and alcoholism. Their escape as teen-agers came through the game of tennis, where a modicum of talent combined with good-looks gave them early exposure to the country club world of wealth and privilege. One of the girls became good enough to eventually make the draw at Wimbledon, and her glamorous presence there led to marriage with one of England's leading cricketers. Meanwhile, during the Cuban missile crisis, her sister was briefly swept into the social whirl of the hard-partying Kennedy clan. There were down times, as well: Living out of automobiles and hopping box-cars to make it to the next tournament.
The tennis circuit was alive with characters in those years, and author Mcguire has restored many of them to memory in these pages. If you love tennis or mid-century America, or are curious as to how two young women could live out their dreams as did "Our Gal Sunday" of radio soap opera fame, then you will be well rewarded by Tennis Saves.
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Format: Paperback
Previous reviews aptly use words like accurate and charming to describe this meticulously researched and fascinating biography of two tennis playing sisters who overcame difficult childhoods to lead lives which brought them into the orbits of many of the famous figures of Hollywood, business, and government during the last seven decades. Many of their experiences will surprise you. The author faithfully conveys his subjects' reactions to what they experienced while wisely withholding his own judgments.By letting his two main characters speak for themselves, the author makes the reader feel he was there experiencing the sisters' ups and downs along with them. The fact that neither sister is a household name adds to, rather than detracts from, the charm of the book.
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