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With the Pyeongchang Olympics Under Way, 3 Books on the Games

Controversy, sour contention and not going wins have change into emblematic of the Olympic Games, this yr hosted in Pyeonchang, South Korea. Here are 3 books that delve into the historical past of the Games and the sacrifices required of the athletes to win the gold.

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THE GAMES
A Global History of the Olympics
By David Goldblatt
516 pp. W.W. Norton & Company. (2016)

In this sweeping historical past of the Olympics, Goldblatt recounts the beginning of the Games, first staged through French aristocrat Pierre de Coubertin in the overdue 1800s with the objective of making a wearing tournament absent of politics. Goldblatt’s even-paced manner displays that of a “disciplined distance runner,” wrote our reviewer, including that “The Games” is “a people’s history of the Olympics.” We find out about how tradition and social problems have interaction with the Games, equivalent to when homeless folks residing in Atlanta in 1996 had been introduced unfastened one-way bus tickets to any a part of the nation the place they'd members of the family; or when Jesse Owens, who used to be African-American, received 4 gold medals in the 1936 Games, however used to be snubbed through press beneath the Mason-Dixon line, who didn't post his picture.

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THE BOYS OF WINTER
The Untold Story of a Coach, a Dream, and the 1980 U.S. Olympic Hockey Team
By Wayne Coffey
272 pp. Crown Publishers. (2005)

For a literary play-by-play of the hockey recreation dramatized in the film “Miracle,” flip to this ebook, which recounts the United States Olympic Hockey Team’s sudden win over Russia’s in 1980. Even those that have watched the film will experience the ebook, stated our reviewer, which "is much better than the film at evoking the lives and personalities of the gamers.” The central persona is Herb Brooks, who coached the group to victory, and Coffey argues that, in spite of his brutal strategies, Brooks used to be exactly the proper trainer to reach such an not going victory. According to our reviewer, if the group used to be to have any likelihood in any respect, they “needed a maniac in charge, not a nice guy.”

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THE SECOND MARK
Courage, Corruption, and the Battle for Olympic Gold
By Joy Goodwin
333 pp. Simon & Schuster. (2004)

This ebook through a manufacturer for ABC delves into the lives of the 3 determine skating pairs who competed in the 2002 Winter Olympics in Salt Lake City to discover what it took for them to make it there. There used to be Yelena Berezhnaya, whose spouse, Oleg Shliakhov, bodily and emotionally abused her, continuously locking her of their condominium if he went away. The Chinese determine skating group used to be coached through Yao Bin, who redeemed himself and the Chinese skating program after years of being seen as a laughingstock. And the Canadian hopefuls, David Pelletier and Jamie Salé, who slimly misplaced the gold to the Russians, handiest to be awarded the medal later after a French pass judgement on admitted to having been burdened into her vote through her nationwide skating federation. Goodwin addresses the drawback of intimacy between the judges, skaters and nationwide skating institutions to provide an explanation for why this coercion happens. Our reviewer, who known as Goodwin’s ebook “masterly,” additionally wrote: “‘The Second Mark’ can be classed among the rare sportswriting that, with one eye fixed on court or field or rink, manages to tell us something important about the human spirit.”

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