SPORTING LIFE: HORSES, BOXERS, RIVERS, & A RUSSIAN BALLCLUB
Author: Bill Barich
Publisher: GLOBE PEQUOT ( THE LYONS PRESS, FALCON), Oct 1999
Intimate glimpses into the stories behind the stories, includes vivid insight into 3 different types of horse racing; 2 boxers from radically opposite ends of the spectrum; 2 fly-fishing adventures on legendary CA rivers; & world's strangest baseball club, the Moscow Red Devils. Witty, knowledgeable. 6x9 inches, 192 pgs.
The very best sports writing from one of the master prose stylists of our time.
PRAISE FOR BILL BARICH
"A wonderful writer. His angle of vision is his own, his prose is a delight." --Larry McMurtry
"A splendid prose stylist . . . I will continue to look forward to anything he writes." --Jim Harrison
"Witty, knowledgeable, good writing . . . start Barich now and keep reading him." --Tom McGuane
Bill Barich's widely praised work doesn't get any better than these intimate glimpses into the stories behind the stories, the real lives behind the public facades of sports. Here Barich lets his vivid insight loose upon this earliest passion, delving into the oft-misinterpreted worlds of both participatory and spectator sports, examining:
*three different types of horse racing: down-and-dirty bush racing in Cajun country; the elegant steeplechase at Ascot, England; and a big-time Santa Anita thoroughbred heading for the Kentucky Derby
*two boxers from radically opposite ends of the spectrum: Pat Lawlor struggling to make it, and Mike Tyson battling his emotions
*two fly-fishing adventures on legendary California rivers
*and the world's strangest baseball club, the Moscow Red Devils, barnstorming the United States with Soviet trinkets for sale and skills on a par with good American high school teams
Every piece shines with Barich's distinctive voice, an approach that splendidly balances both enthusiasm and criticism with healthy doses of humor. The result is a rare, informed, and thoroughly enjoyable visit with subjects addressed by many, but mastered by very few.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Bill Barich is the author of seven books, among them Laughing in the Hills, Big Dreams: Into the Heart of California, Carson Valley, a novel, and most recently Crazy for Rivers (page 77). Barich has written extensively for The New Yorker, contributing short stories as well as pieces on such varied subjects as Italian culture, his favorite English pub, and the myriad sports covered here. He is the recipient of a Guggenheim Fellowship, and lives near San Francisco.