SBD/December 17, 2012/People and Pop Culture

Ripped From The Pages: Sports Figures Weigh In On Books They Enjoyed In '12

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Under the header, “Twelve Months of Reading,” the WALL STREET JOURNAL “asked 50 of our friends to tell us what books they enjoyed in 2012.” Among the sports execs featured was former MLB manager TONY LA RUSSA, who states, “Beginning in July, I attacked my reading with a vengeance." The "posse of fiction friends who I read during my ‘off season'" included JOHN GRISHAM ("The Racketeer"), LEE CHILD ("A Wanted Man"), VINCE FLYNN ("The Last Man"), DANIEL SILVA ("The Fallen Angel"), NELSON DEMILLE ("The Panther"), DAVID BALDACCI ("The Forgotten"), TED BELL ("Phantom") and JOHN SANFORD ("Buried Prey"). Capitals and Wizards Owner TED LEONSIS said, “I found DAVID AGUS's ‘The End of Illness’ to be a smart look at how to extend a life of vigor by playing offense with life. ‘An Economist Gets Lunch,’ by TYLER COWEN, is a fun and provocative book that takes on what the author believes are snobby, elitist ‘foodie’ views of the world by showing how anyone can get a good, fresh meal without spending a bundle. ... VIVEK RANADIVE and KEVIN MANEY's 'The Two-Second Advantage’ shows how, as the pace of data and business transactions accelerates each year, the strategic advantage of a head start in receiving and acting on information becomes even more significant.” Rays manager JOE MADDON: “A few years ago, someone recommended KEN FOLLETT's ‘Pillars of the Earth’ to me, and at the time I thought it was the best book I had ever read. Over the past year I have read the first two volumes of his Century Trilogy: ‘Fall of Giants’ and ‘Winter of the World.’ It is historical fiction at its best” (WSJ.com, 12/14).

ROAMING THE SIDELINE: The WALL STREET JOURNAL's Gregg Easterbrook reviews "Coaching Confidential," by the N.Y. Daily News' GARY MYERS. The book has "many engaging story lines," and is the "perfect stocking stuffer for the NFL addict." But the "shortcoming of 'Coaching Confidential' is that, though it provides copious information about coaches' personality quirks and NFL organizational structures, the book is short on insight," such as "why do some men succeed as NFL coaches and others do not?" (WALL STREET JOURNAL, 12/15).
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