Entertainment & Sports Book Reviews (page 295)

Released: Aug. 1, 1994

"In its moving evocation of lost times, this does for pro football what Roger Kahn's The Boys of Summer did for baseball."
A lovely memoir of a sports-mad kid growing up in Baltimore during the 1950s—funny and bittersweet. Read full book review >
OCTOBER 1964 by David Halberstam
Released: Aug. 1, 1994

"A powerful and entertaining examination of the forces transforming baseball, and the country, in a pivotal period in the history of America and its national pastime."
The riveting story of how two very different baseball teams, reflective of the times in America, got to the 1964 World Series. Read full book review >

FRITZ REINER by Philip Hart
Released: Aug. 1, 1994

"This substantial study makes the reader hungry for the same treatment of Reiner's contemporaries: How about Eugene Ormandy, Charles Munch, Paul Paray, or Thomas Schippers, Mr. Hart? (40 b&w photos, not seen)"
A worthy addition to the small shelf of famous-maestro biographies relying on thoughtful scholarship rather than hype. Read full book review >
Released: July 11, 1994

"The reader is left knowing immeasurably more about Moe Berg, and caring immeasurably less. (16 pages b&w photos)"
Magazine writer Dawidoff (Sports Illustrated, New Yorker, New Republic) reduces one of baseball's most colorful characters mostly to monochrome. Read full book review >
Released: July 1, 1994

"Full of good stories and sure to warm the hearts of anyone who hates the Yankees."
Sprightly recounting of the years between the end of the great New York Yankees dynasty of the 1950s and '60s and the team's revival in the late 1970s. Read full book review >

JORDAN by Mitchell Krugel
Released: July 1, 1994

"Includes a handy listing of Jordan statistics and records, and some interesting basketball lore and history; but there's really little new here. (8 pages photos, not seen)"
Yet another book about the ``retired'' basketball superstar, this one with passages written as if by Jordan, from ``Michael's perspective,'' though not in his ``exact words.'' Krugel, a sportswriter for the Hammond (Ill.) Read full book review >
Released: July 1, 1994

"A work of genuine intellectual nourishment, brief but brilliant."
Short, extremely perceptive discussions about ``meaning'' and ``understanding'' in serious music that will captivate new listeners as well as the musically tuned-in. Read full book review >
Released: July 1, 1994

What better event than a newspaper strike to show the gulf between the assumptions of the American labor movement and the realities of the information economy? Read full book review >
VIETNAM AT THE MOVIES by Michael Lee Lanning
Released: July 1, 1994

"Julian Smith's Looking Away: Hollywood and Vietnam (1975) is a far better treatment of the same topic."
An examination of motion picture treatments of the Vietnam War that, while sometimes on the mark, is marred by questionable critical judgments. Read full book review >
WILD, HIGH AND TIGHT by Peter Golenbock
Released: June 27, 1994

"Much of this is a rehashing of the author's earlier books on the Yankees, but it will, nonetheless, stir up controversy by reopening old wounds."
Golenbock barely stays within the foul lines in this Baseball Babylon catalogue of the late Yankees manager's career, his celebrated fistfights, hangovers, trysts with underage women, and battles with owners, players, and the press. Read full book review >
DIAMOND by Mark Harris
Released: June 20, 1994

"Harris has an engaging voice, although he does trot out a lot of old saws—how baseball nurtured American democracy, nostalgia for day games on grass—that just don't cut it any more."
The author of the novel Bang the Drum Slowly gathers over 40 years' worth of baseball essays and throws in an excerpt from Bang, as well as the entire screenplay of the movie. Read full book review >
Released: June 15, 1994

"Frequent celebrity coauthor Herskowitz (This 'n' That by Bette Davis, 1987, etc.) helps the slugger achieve a low-key, no-frills prose style that packs a lot of information (and some good gossip) into a fairly short book. (16 pages b&w photos, not seen)"
Given Mantle's well-known fondness for the bottle (and his widely publicized decision to seek treatment for it earlier this year), it's perhaps not surprising that his book opens and closes with a plea to kids not to abuse drugs or alcohol. Read full book review >
Kirkus Interview
Jason Gay
November 17, 2015

In the 1990s, copies of Richard Carlson’s Don't Sweat the Small Stuff (and its many sequels) were seemingly everywhere, giving readers either the confidence to prioritize their stresses or despondence over the slender volume’s not addressing their particular set of problems. While not the first book of its kind, it kicked open the door for an industry of self-help, worry-reduction advice guides. In his first book, Little Victories, Wall Street Journal sports columnist Gay takes less of a guru approach, though he has drawn an audience of readers appreciative of reportage that balances insights with a droll, self-deprecating outlook. He occasionally focuses his columns on “the Rules” (of Thanksgiving family touch football, the gym, the office holiday party, etc.), which started as a genial poke in the eye at the proliferation of self-help books and, over time, came to explore actual advice “both practical and ridiculous” and “neither perfect nor universal.” The author admirably combines those elements in every piece in the book. View video >