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The Boys in the Boat: Nine Americans and Their Epic Quest for Gold at the 1936 Berlin Olympics

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Edward Herrmann

14 Hours 27 Minutes

Penguin Audio

June 2013

Audio Book Summary

The #1 New York Times–bestselling story about American Olympic triumph in Nazi Germany, the inspiration for the PBS documentary The Boys of '36, broadcast to coincide with the 2016 Summer Olympics and the 80th anniversary of the boys' gold medal race.For readers of Unbroken, out of the depths of the Depression comes an irresistible story about beating the odds and finding hope in the most desperate of times-the improbable, intimate account of how nine working-class boys from the American West showed the world at the 1936 Olympics in Berlin what true grit really meant. It was an unlikely quest from the start. With a team composed of the sons of loggers, shipyard workers, and farmers, the University of Washington eight-oar crew team was never expected to defeat the elite teams of the East Coast and Great Britain, yet they did, going on to shock the world by defeating the German team rowing for Adolf Hitler. The emotional heart of the tale lies with Joe Rantz, a teenager without family or prospects, who rows not only to regain his shattered self-regard but also to find a real place for himself in the world. Drawing on the boys own journals and vivid memories of a once-in-a-lifetime shared dream, Brown has created an unforgettable portrait of an era, a celebration of a remarkable achievement, and a chronicle of one extraordinary young man personal quest. From the Hardcover edition.

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Reviews

  • JACKLYN G

    I liked the book, the purpose and dedication of the 9 rowers and their coaches was amazing. It was a different time and I don’t think it would happen today. However, it was a good read

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  • Benjamin A

    Great book and great narration! This is a must read.

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  • Martin T

    MFT- loved this story about a great sport, the hardest of times, and a team of boys who worked hard to win., and winning big became their standard. Joe is an inspiration to anyone who feels life is not fair: he learns how to overcome and persevere at a young age, which compels him to fit in and do his best. The parts about the sport, its history and Polcock are fascinating. Good read for all.

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  • Miriam R

    Excellent story and narration. Once I became involved with the characters, it was totally engrossing.

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  • Jeff H

    Excellent in every way. The book is well written with a ton of detail but never too much. Just when I thought it was going to bog down it didn\'t. Just great!

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  • Filip F

    Excellent book. It hit the nail on the head describing the rowing world. Despite being a Cal alumni, I enjoyed the book a lot. There are lots of things in the book that reminded me of my rowing days.

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  • Ayako H

    I've been wanting to read this book for a long time ever since my daughter started rowing last year. Loved it! The story is so exciting and magical. It's every bit as good as my friends told me. This is my first Audiobook experience and I must say, I can get addicted to it.

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  • susan hewitt

    Wonderfully written and the narration fern gave me goosebumps !

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  • Tatjana Lehmann

    Nice story. Many facts though at times. Great narrator.

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  • Jane Trivett

    Magical story with incredible character development and vivid descriptions! I LOVED How the writer flipped back and forth between current events of the time and what was happening in the small neighborhoods of Washington. The reader's tones made it hard to turn off. It was my first time hearing the story of Joe and his team and I was so impressed by their story.

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