The legendary Hall-of-Fame outfielder was a national hero during his record-setting career with the New York Yankees, but public revelations of alcoholism, infidelity, and family strife badly tarnished the ballplayer's reputation in his latter years.
In The Last Boy, Leavy plumbs the depths of the complex athlete, using copious first-hand research as well as her own memories, to show why The Mick remains the most beloved and misunderstood Yankee slugger of all time.
A Publishers Weekly Best Book of 2018
“Leavy’s newest masterpiece…. A major work of American history by an author with a flair for mesmerizing story-telling.” —Forbes
He lived in the present tense—in the camera’s lens. There was no frame he couldn’t or wouldn’t fill. He swung the heaviest bat, earned the most money, and incurred the biggest fines. Like all the new-fangled gadgets then flooding the marketplace—radios, automatic clothes washers, Brownie cameras, microphones and loudspeakers—Babe Ruth "made impossible events happen." Aided by his crucial partnership with Christy Walsh—business manager, spin doctor, damage control wizard, and surrogate father, all stuffed into one tightly buttoned double-breasted suit—Ruth drafted the blueprint for modern athletic stardom.
His was a life of journeys and itineraries—from uncouth to couth, spartan to spendthrift, abandoned to abandon; from Baltimore to Boston to New York, and back to Boston at the end of his career for a finale with the only team that would have him. There were road trips and hunting trips; grand tours of foreign capitals and post-season promotional tours, not to mention those 714 trips around the bases.
After hitting his 60th home run in September 1927—a total that would not be exceeded until 1961, when Roger Maris did it with the aid of the extended modern season—he embarked on the mother of all barnstorming tours, a three-week victory lap across America, accompanied by Yankee teammate Lou Gehrig. Walsh called the tour a "Symphony of Swat." The Omaha World Herald called it "the biggest show since Ringling Brothers, Barnum and Bailey, and seven other associated circuses offered their entire performance under one tent." In The Big Fella, acclaimed biographer Jane Leavy recreates that 21-day circus and in so doing captures the romp and the pathos that defined Ruth’s life and times.
Drawing from more than 250 interviews, a trove of previously untapped documents, and Ruth family records, Leavy breaks through the mythology that has obscured the legend and delivers the man.
With the air filled with eager anticipation, it is a picture-perfect evening for the Saints to battle their worthy opponent, the devilish Virginia Villains. Chosen to play quarterback in the second half of the game, J. C. has one big problem he has never played football. With Apostles and Saints as his teammates, J. C. and Coach Fumble Pitts somehow manage to pull off a few miraculous plays that include walking on water, speaking in tongues, and a Hail Mary pass like no other.
ALL SAINTS PLAY is a humorous tale filled with delightful and despicable characters who prove that sometimes all a football team needs to win is a miraculous intervention.
The tiny village of Trabane is tucked far away in the west of Ireland. A coastal resort on the Atlantic Ocean, the rugged strip of land that separates it from the beach boasts a golf course designed more by nature than by man. On 'links' like this golf is much more than just a game to those that play it. It is a battlefield where scores are settled and every man and woman is equal. Anything further from the wealth and luxury of an exclusive country club would be hard to imagine.
Yet to young Larry Lynch, nicknamed LOOPY, golf opens up new horizons and the chance of a better life. The story of Loopy about much more than golf, it is the struggle of good versus evil, played out against a majestic backdrop of towering sand dunes, emerald green fairways and Atlantic hailstorms that prick the face like steel knitting needles.
Loopy is pitted against snobbery, big business and ruthless financiers in a golf match that is a parable of life itself. Helped only by an eccentric caddy and a gaggle of noisy supporters, he takes on some of the world's best amateur golfers in a titanic struggle that will warm the heart of readers everywhere. Little does he know that he is playing for a prize far, far greater than a silver trophy.
Through it all, Binchy imbues the work with a wonderful feel of small town Ireland and, of course, the Irish spirit.
“Leavy has hit it out of the park…A lot more than a biography. It’s a consideration of how we create our heroes, and how this hero’s self perception distinguishes him from nearly every other great athlete in living memory… a remarkably rich portrait.” — Time
The instant New York Times bestseller about the baseball legend and famously reclusive Dodgers’ pitcher Sandy Koufax, from award-winning former Washington Post sportswriter Jane Leavy. Sandy Koufax reveals, for the first time, what drove the three-time Cy Young award winner to the pinnacle of baseball and then—just as quickly—into self-imposed exile.