Tuesday, January 13, 2015

The Boys in the Boat by Daniel James Brown

by Emma Rodgers

Adventure, romance, murder and revenge...oops. Wrong book!

How about, rowing, poverty, school, rowing, WWII, rowing, Hitler, rowing, rowing, dating, WWII, rowing.... Well if that sounds like your kind of book then The Boys in the Boat is for you! The book follows Joe Rantz through his struggles of growing up in poverty and isolation from his family, motivating himself through school and into college. Once in college, The University of Washington, the tale of Joe's time on the Washington rowing team, the fight to improve, to continue attending school, and to grasp the true meaning of rowing captivates the reader and has him/her holding their breath during each race! The ultimate goal: to row in the 1936 Berlin Olympics, under the ever present eyes of Adolf Hitler.

This wonderful novel struck a personal string for me. Being a rower myself, I understood many of the struggles Joe and his teammates face; competition, frustration, boat rankings, and all the other the demanding aspects of this unique sport.

The Boys in the Boat is an excellent choice for all who enjoy a heart warming and wrenching tale. A story of triumph and failure, of love and hardships. It is especially suited for those who row, as it will teach them much rowing history and many incredible insights on this challenging sport.

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