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Hardcover Gold in the Water: The True Story of Ordinary Men and Their Extraordinary Dream of Olympic Glory Book

ISBN: 0312265956

ISBN13: 9780312265953

Gold in the Water: The True Story of Ordinary Men and Their Extraordinary Dream of Olympic Glory

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Format: Hardcover

Condition: Like New

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Book Overview

""'Oh my God, is this really happening? '" "It was halfway through the 200-meter breaststroke finals at the 1998 World Championships and the rookie was gliding four feet beneath the water's wind-rumpled surface. Above him, 15,000 spectators were screaming encouragement and millions more were watching on live international television. All of them could see what the rookie and the seven other finalists could not: the actual race as it unfolded." "Underwater,...

Customer Reviews

5 ratings

I still have CHILLS running down my back...

Mullen is magnificent! He took me where no other writer has even previously done. He made it personal and made it as emotional as all hell! Congrats.As an avid fan of phyiscal sports and rarely a fan of soft individual type sports, such as swimming, tennis, and dancing I was entralled with the dedication and the courage of these immortal athletes. Time and time again Mullen sent CHILLS down my back!! Have you ever found your self throwing fake punches while watching Boxing on ESPN or while watching the Rocky movies ?Throughout the 300 some odd pages I was throwing jabs and crosses into my pillow because of the extreme adreline rush of Kurt's and Tom's swims, and throwing upper-cuts towards the accusations of Dara's enhanced swims. Gold in the Water is GOLDEN and it often left me looking at the ceiling and questioning whether I had ever really pushed myself to greatness...or if I ever could. Keep them coming PH!!

Great View from the Pool

Mr. Mullen's writing is lucid and completely engrossing. The book is about the Syndey Olympics, but it opens several years earlier in the middle of a race between a "newcomer" and his older and more cagey mentor. I started reading about them while standing in a crowded bookstore lobby, and became so involved that I had to sitdown and read the first chapter. Wow! What a race! .... When I got it, I finished it over the weekend and the story only got better & better. It follows one Calif team and their Lombardi-esque coach for 2 years. The coach's story alone is enough to carry the book. You learn everything about swimming you never knew--what's a fast pool, why they wear Spiderman outfits to race, how they train. Sometimes the information is excessive but it never bogs down. This is definitely a sports book for non-swimming fans. If the book has a weakness, it's the Afterward, which takes place only a short time after the Olympics. All and all, this was 1 of the best sports books I've ever read.

The Right Stuff

At long last, an up close and personal look at USA elite swimmers. Mr. Mullen tells an engrossing tale of the odyssey of four young men striving for berths on the Olympic team, Australia 2000. Most Americans are unaware of the depth, strength and long tradition of the USA's predominance in Olympic swimming. US teams are so strong that unfortunately, we have to leave at home as many deserving finalists as those who go. Only two representatives of each individual swimming event are allowed for each country. (It used to be three, but the powers that be were tired of the US taking gold, silver and bronze in every event.)The lead actors are All-American Tom Wilkens, multi-faceted Kurt Grote and everyone's dream or nightmare of a coach, Dick Jochums. Supporting roles showcase super controlled Dod Wales, son of an acclaimed Olympic swimmer, and burn out Tate Blahnik who has it all, but is tired to death of competitive swimming. The author follows these magical four for eighteen months culminating in the 2000 Olympics. The front cover calls these four "ordinary men." I strongly disagree; they are unique and extraordinary athletes. Tom Wilkens, in particular, grabbed my attention, affection, and awe.This book is a page-turner; I read it in one sitting. It is not just for swimming aficionados, but also for anyone who likes to read about what it takes to become a champion and the inevitable burdens on the strength and psyche of the contenders. A glossary of terms would have been helpful, but the author is masterful in his explanations. As a parent of a former age group swimmer, I can attest that this is no puff piece; Mr. Mullen tells it like it is.

Compelling and engrossing

This book is a compelling and engrossing character study of a group of super-achieving athletes with congruent but sometimes competing aspirations. It has an excellent narrative drive that made it a real page-turner, and perhaps because it pulls no punches in its treatment of its focal characters, the reader is left with a deep appreciation for the complex and usually (but not always) admirable qualties of elite athletes. Swimmers tend to be smart, and this is an intelligent treatment of both swimming and competition in general: this book is to the standard sports expose as collegiate swimmers' GPAs are to the GPAs of (pick your contact sport) players. Although I read this on the recommendation of a friend who is a serious swimmer, I feel it deserves an audience far beyond the competitive swimming world, for which I'm sure it will be required reading.

Superb! Destined be a All-Time top 10 best sports book

I am not a swimmer, so I was amazed to find myself hooked by Gold in the Water from the first lines on Page One. This incredible book has everything you will ever want in a sports tale--drama, rivalry, flawed character, human emotion, and high stakes. The characters themselves were so real you feel like you're their teammates. I've never read a book that comes remotely close to chronicling so much intimate, personal details about world-class athletes. Surprise (not): Deep down, they're like everyone else. I can't remember the last time a book could make my andrenaline race AND make me cry (more than once). The final pages were full of surprises. That made the unexpected ending all the more triumphant. Gold in the Water sets the standard for describing the pure beauty of athletes chasing an impossible dream with all their hearts.
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