The website is far behind A Superfluous Man‘s reading schedule, so this week, we will attempt to catch up a bit by breezing through those works that are neither so bad nor so good to merit closer attention.
Title: War Room: The Legacy of Bill Belichick and the Art of Building the Perfect Team, by Michael Holley
Motivation: A vague desire to read a book about sports, as well as a hefty dose of wishful thinking.
Completed: June 23, 2012 (#43)
Recommendation: Perhaps more for ardent fans of the New England Patriots than for casual football followers.
Mr. Holley’s War Room is widely considered to be one of the best reported and well-informed “inside football” books in print, and is highly praised by the hommes sérieux of Sports Illustrated. Here we follow the coaching history of the famously taciturn Bill Belichick and a few of his protégés as they make their bones in the NFL, focusing mainly on the building of Belichick’s own dynasty in Boston. Belichick turns out to be a methodical and, well, taciturn fellow, and his teams have won quite a number of football games.
I found the book dull. Perhaps aspiring football coaches will find more meat here, but for those interested in an excellent book involving football—rather than an excellent football book—the superb Friday Night Lights: A Town, A Team, and A Dream by H.G. Bissinger is the place to begin as another American football season kicks off. Mr. Bissinger’s classic is less a sports book and more an ethnology of a certain corner of the American South, which as a general statement values its circenses far more than even panem.