Buoyant advice for readers ready to hit the river.

Sweep Rowing

THE SHORT STORY

With 20 years’ experience coaching crew, Cherry talks not just mechanics, but the potential art in the rowing experience.

This guide to rowing comes at the sport from a pre-Socratic angle, digging to its essence, then shifting to the Platonic ideal of release, strike, recovery sweep, catch, drive—the perfect stroke, like a dive without a splash. When you put all the elements together—nothing more, nothing less—there’s a mysterious elevation of spirit. Cherry, in his debut, brings a pleasingly old-school formality to rowing: do it right, do it to perfection, but have fun while you’re at it. Sense the atmosphere of the wooden boathouse—the deep shadows, the slanting rays of Rembrandt light—and you learn that there is a way to conduct yourself as a rower: with respect and consideration for others, with quiet camaraderie and an offering hand, and with an eye for the common good. “You must embrace the fact that as soon as you lay hands on the racing shell, you surrender your unique identity absolutely.” Cherry offers clear instruction and advice to oarsmen and -women, coxswains, and coaches, like how to get the shell from the rack to the dock and into the water, where to halt the catch—“Only enough force to bury the blade’s paint”—and how to execute the drive: “No matter if you’re on the square or feathering, it is the job of the drive hand to strike at the finish and unweight at the catch.” (Don’t worry, the lingo becomes self-explanatory.) There are checklists for the coxswain and the coach. There are playlists of songs that Cherry recommends. In fact, gentleman rower that he is, Cherry always recommends, never claiming the last word: “What I’ve written here is not intended to be the final word on technique but only pieces of accessible guidance that will make some good sense to you.”

Buoyant advice for readers ready to hit the river.

Pub Date: May 14, 2014

ISBN: 978-1-4575-2285-7

Page Count: 104

Publisher: Dog Ear Publishing

Review Posted Online: Aug. 8, 2015

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Sept. 15, 2015

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Stricter than, say, Bergen Evans or W3 ("disinterested" means impartial — period), Strunk is in the last analysis...

THE ELEMENTS OF STYLE

50TH ANNIVERSARY EDITION

Privately published by Strunk of Cornell in 1918 and revised by his student E. B. White in 1959, that "little book" is back again with more White updatings.

Stricter than, say, Bergen Evans or W3 ("disinterested" means impartial — period), Strunk is in the last analysis (whoops — "A bankrupt expression") a unique guide (which means "without like or equal").

Pub Date: May 15, 1972

ISBN: 0205632645

Page Count: 105

Publisher: Macmillan

Review Posted Online: Oct. 28, 2011

Kirkus Reviews Issue: May 1, 1972

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IN MY PLACE

From the national correspondent for PBS's MacNeil-Lehrer Newshour: a moving memoir of her youth in the Deep South and her role in desegregating the Univ. of Georgia. The eldest daughter of an army chaplain, Hunter-Gault was born in what she calls the ``first of many places that I would call `my place' ''—the small village of Due West, tucked away in a remote little corner of South Carolina. While her father served in Korea, Hunter-Gault and her mother moved first to Covington, Georgia, and then to Atlanta. In ``L.A.'' (lovely Atlanta), surrounded by her loving family and a close-knit black community, the author enjoyed a happy childhood participating in activities at church and at school, where her intellectual and leadership abilities soon were noticed by both faculty and peers. In high school, Hunter-Gault found herself studying the ``comic-strip character Brenda Starr as I might have studied a journalism textbook, had there been one.'' Determined to be a journalist, she applied to several colleges—all outside of Georgia, for ``to discourage the possibility that a black student would even think of applying to one of those white schools, the state provided money for black students'' to study out of state. Accepted at Michigan's Wayne State, the author was encouraged by local civil-rights leaders to apply, along with another classmate, to the Univ. of Georgia as well. Her application became a test of changing racial attitudes, as well as of the growing strength of the civil-rights movement in the South, and Gault became a national figure as she braved an onslaught of hostilities and harassment to become the first black woman to attend the university. A remarkably generous, fair-minded account of overcoming some of the biggest, and most intractable, obstacles ever deployed by southern racists. (Photographs—not seen.)

Pub Date: Nov. 1, 1992

ISBN: 0-374-17563-2

Page Count: 192

Publisher: Farrar, Straus and Giroux

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Sept. 1, 1992

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