Friday, May 11, 2012

Book Review - Seabiscuit: An American Legend

Another book that was on my reading list for years finally made its way to the nightstand.  The movie was certainly enjoyable; the book is downright excellent, one I could not put down and will probably read again and again. Seabiscuit is downright inspirational.

The story is well known:  the country was fighting the Depression and needed a boost.  It came in the form of a horse that ran with an odd gait and was on his way to the glue factory before Charles Howard decided to buy him for a pittance.  Seabiscuit had a reputation of being ornery but in the right hands, proved to be a loveable winner. 

Howard, who started out virtually penniless in California, was a self made millionaire but had personal tragedy in his life.  His trainer, Tom Smith, was consider washed up and ridiculed for antiquated methods.  The jockey, Red Pollard, had almost as may losses as total rides*.  But when the four came together, as if by fate, it all clicked.  Seabiscuit set racecourse records all over the country, ultimately defeating the mighty War Admiral in a head to head battle.

The author, Laura Hillenbrand, has only written two books.  I need to get my hands on the other: Unbroken: A World War II Story of Survival, Resilience, and Redemption.  I am sure it is as well researched and written as Seabiscuit.

* Reminds me of:

Bollocks the Bore was a mighty fine horse
And under his tail was the (w)hole of his arse
He won forty races and lost forty more
Any wonder they called him Bollocks the Bore

Thanks to Uncle Eamon Flanagan for teaching me that one.

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