Books by Claudia Miller

SHANNON MILLER by Claudia Miller
Released: March 1, 1999

A proud and devoted mother's overdone portrait of her celebrated gymnast daughter's trials and triumphs. Claudia Miller relates her daughter's progress from jungle-gym-climbing toddler to leader of the first US women's gymnastic team to bring home the Olympic gold. For those who don't know a double twisting Yurchenko from a piked full twisting double back, the particulars of Shannon Miller's gymnastic feats in innumerable competitions quickly become tedious. Of more interest to parents of an exceptional child is the story of the Miller family's efforts to keep one daughter's striking success from having negative effects on her older sister and younger brother. With Shannon's success came tension between her parents and her controlling and demanding coach (by this time, Claudia Miller had trained to become a gymnastics judge, and some second-guessing of the coach was probably inevitable) and difficult decisions concerning agents and money. Recurrent injuries were another problem, especially since the author is a Christian Scientist and her husband a Baptist; for Shannon, Christian Science practitioners and prayer were combined with consultations with physicians, medical treatments, surgery, and physical therapy as needed. Rather surprisingly, Miller barely mentions the controversial weight issue in her discussions of her daughter's health, despite the fact that at age 15 Shannon weighed only 76 pounds. Even allowing for motherly prejudice, the portrait of the young gymnast that emerges is one any parent would be proud of: an outstanding athlete who is also a top student, and someone who makes exceptional demands on herself but is at the same time thoughtful and considerate of others. As an Olympic gymnast, Shannon Miller had the eyes of the world on her, but this overly technical treatment won—t put her on the bestseller podium where fellow gymnast Dominique Moceanu once stood. (8 color, 42 b&w illustrations, not seen) Read full book review >