A few words about book's author
David Halberstam (1934-2007) was the author of twenty-two books, including fifteen bestsellers. Born in New York City, Halberstam spent much of the 1960s as a reporter for The New York Times, covering the Vietnam War and the Civil Rights movement. His Vietnam reporting earned him both a George C. Polk Award and a 1964 Pulitzer Prize for International Reporting. Vanity Fair dubbed Halberstam the Moses of American journalism, and the subjects of his books reflect his passion and range: war, foreign policy, history, and sports. The Best and the Brightest (1962), his sixth book, a critique of the Kennedy administrations Vietnam policy, became a #1 bestseller. His next book, The Powers that Be, a study of four American media companies, was hailed by The New York Times as a prodigy of research. Many of Halberstams books explored themes in professional sports, including bestsellers The Teammates, a portrait of the friendship between baseball players Ted Williams, Dominic DiMaggio, Johnny Pesky, and Bobby Doerr, and The Education of a Coach, a profile of New England Patriots Coach Bill Belichick.
A journalist, historian, and biographer, David Halberstam brought his idiosyncratic and stylistic approach to heavy subjects: the Vietnam War (in 1972s The Best and the Brightest); the shaping of American politics (in 1979s The Powers That Be); the American economys relationship with the automobile industry (in 1986s The Reckoning); and the civil rights movement (in 1998s Freedom Riders). His books were loaded with anecdotes, metaphors, suspense, and a narrative tone most writers reserve for fiction. The resulting books — many of them huge bestsellers — gave Halberstam heavyweight status (he won the Pulitzer for international reporting in 1964) and established him as an important commentator on American politics and power. Halberstam was also known for his sports books. In The Breaks of the Game, which a critic for The New York Times called one of the best books Ive ever read about American sports, he took on professional basketball. In The Amateurs, he examined the world of sculling; in Summer of 49 and October 1964, he focused on two pivotal baseball events: the Boston Red Soxs exasperating near victory over the New York Yankees for the 1949 pennant, and the 1964 season, when the Yankees lost the World Series to the St. Louis Cardinals. In 1999s Playing for Keeps: Michael Jordan and the World He Made, Halberstam documented the making of a legend. Always happy to extend his reach well beyond the subject at hand, Halberstam packed his books with social commentary as well as sports detail. His writing routine was as strenuous and disciplined as that of any of the athletes he wrote about. To sustain his steady output of extensively researched, almost-always-massive books, he allows no unscheduled interruptions: Most of us who have survived here New York after a number of years have ironclad work rules. Nothing interrupts us. Nothing, he once wrote in The New York Times. We surface only at certain hours of the day.
Good To Know
David Halberstams first job was as a reporter for a small-town Mississippi newspaper.