For readers of Laura Hillenbrand's Seabiscuit and Unbroken, the
dramatic story of the American rowing team that stunned the world
at Hitler's 1936 Berlin Olympics
Daniel James Brown's robust book tells the story of the
University of Washington's 1936 eight-oar crew and their epic quest
for an Olympic gold medal, a team that transformed the sport and
grabbed the attention of millions of Americans. The sons of
loggers, shipyard workers, and farmers, the boys defeated elite
rivals first from eastern and British universities and finally the
German crew rowing for Adolf Hitler in the Olympic games in Berlin,
The emotional heart of the story lies with one rower, Joe
Rantz, a teenager without family or prospects, who rows not for
glory, but to regain his shattered self-regard and to find a place
he can call home. The crew is assembled by an enigmatic coach and
mentored by a visionary, eccentric British boat builder, but it is
their trust in each other that makes them a victorious
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