I cried reading this wonderful story about crew teammates who make their dream of earning Gold in the 1936 Berlin Olympics. Being a University of Washington Husky, I can only imagine the pride and joy the eights crew felt after so many days out in Lake Washington in the Cut. Daniel James Brown researches each individual’s past to create a story in which you get to learn about the struggles and trials of this team while learning about the men behind the legend. You grow to love these young men who chased after an impossible dream. They went on to become doctors, lawyers, engineers and tradesmen, family men and respected members of their communities. I enjoyed learning about how they all went to live their lives as heroes to a nation that in a few years would be at the brink of World War II.
The Nine are proof that with hard work and chemistry any team can achieve greatness and still stay humble and grounded. Proof that no dream is unachievable as long as you believe in yourself and take a chance at it. This is a great story of perseverance, and how important an education is for the soul inside and outside the classroom. Every team should read this book and discover if the have that swing that will make then legends. From the coaches to the cutting edge technology employed in the world of crew, you will learn about the sport and its traditions, which to this day still live on.
The Boys in the Boat, as well as Unbroken, is an excellent book for kids and teenagers. Both have a young People’s edition. Check out the PBS documentary The Boys of ’36 if you’d like to know more about the team and don’t have time to read the book.
May we all become part of a winning team and forge our own legends. 🙂