Playing through the Whistle: Steel, Football, and an American Town

By  S. L. Price
Read by Joe Barrett

15.29 Hours 10/04/2016 unabridged
Format: Digital Download (In Stock)
  • Regular Price: $22.95

    Special Price $18.36

    or 1 Credit

    ISBN: 9781504760218

    $12.99 With Membership: Learn More
  • $6.95

    ISBN: 9781504760225

  • $39.95

    ISBN: 9781504760195

  • $29.95

    ISBN: 9781504760201

From a Sports Illustrated senior writer, a moving epic of football and industrial America, telling the story of Aliquippa, Pennsylvania, its now-shuttered steel mill, and its legendary high school football team Aliquippa, Pennsylvania, is famous for two things: the Jones and Laughlin Steel mill, an industrial behemoth that helped win World War II, and football, with a high school team that has produced numerous NFL stars including Mike Ditka and Darrelle Revis. But the mill, once the fourth largest producer in America, closed for good in 2000. What happens to a town when a dream dies? Does it just disappear? In Playing through the Whistle, celebrated sports writer S. L. Price tells the story of this remarkable place, its people, its players, and through it, a wider story of American history from the turn of the twentieth century. Aliquippa has been many things—a rigidly controlled company town, a booming racial and ethnic melting pot, and, for a brief time, a workers’ paradise. Price expertly traces this history, while also recounting the birth and development of high school sports, from a minor pastime to a source of civic pride to today, when it sometimes seems like the only way out of a life of poverty, drug abuse, and crime. Playing through the Whistle is a masterpiece of narrative journalism that will make you cry and cheer in equal measure.

Learn More
Membership Details
  • Only $12.99/month gets you 1 Credit/month
  • Cancel anytime
  • Hate a book? Then we do too, and we'll exchange it.
See how it works in 15 seconds

Summary

Summary

A 2017 PEN/ESPN Award for Literary Sports Writing Finalist

A Boston Globe Pick of the Best Books of 2016

An Amazon Best Book of the Month for October 2016

A Kirkus Reviews Pick of the Best Nonfiction of 2016

From a Sports Illustrated senior writer, a moving epic of football and industrial America, telling the story of Aliquippa, Pennsylvania, its now-shuttered steel mill, and its legendary high school football team

Aliquippa, Pennsylvania, is famous for two things: the Jones and Laughlin Steel mill, an industrial behemoth that helped win World War II, and football, with a high school team that has produced numerous NFL stars including Mike Ditka and Darrelle Revis. But the mill, once the fourth largest producer in America, closed for good in 2000. What happens to a town when a dream dies? Does it just disappear?

In Playing through the Whistle, celebrated sports writer S. L. Price tells the story of this remarkable place, its people, its players, and through it, a wider story of American history from the turn of the twentieth century. Aliquippa has been many things—a rigidly controlled company town, a booming racial and ethnic melting pot, and, for a brief time, a workers’ paradise.

Price expertly traces this history, while also recounting the birth and development of high school sports, from a minor pastime to a source of civic pride to today, when it sometimes seems like the only way out of a life of poverty, drug abuse, and crime. Playing through the Whistle is a masterpiece of narrative journalism that will make you cry and cheer in equal measure.

Editorial Reviews

Editorial Reviews

“A sprawling display of Price’s signature prose: sharp, vivid, and particular…With football as his lens, Price transports you to the glory days of an iconic American steel town.” Jeanne Marie Laskas, New York Times bestselling author
“An artful mix of history, economics, sociology, and athletics……Price’s football story is really that of America’s Rust Belt in poignant miniature.” Kirkus Reviews (starred review)
“The author provides memorable characterizations of cocky English-teacher-turned-football-coach Mike Zmijanac in the 1970s and star defensive lineman Jeff Baldwin in the ’80s…A more thorough account of any high school athletic program in the country would be tough to find.” Publishers Weekly
“Impressively researched and organized.” Library Journal
“Price, a Sports Illustrated senior writer, tells the town’s story all very well…There are also, of course, revealing anecdotes about individual players and the coaches.” Booklist
“A gut-wrenching portrait of a high school football team that has to embody the American dream for one small town, in large part because everything else that was supposed to do it has fallen apart. I would say this is some of the best sports writing I read this year, except that it’s some of the best writing I’ve read this year.” David Epstein, author of The Sports Gene
Playing Through the Whistle is a big book on a tough town. It reminded me of The Wire, which is high praise.” Roy Blount Jr., author of About Three Bricks Shy of a Load
“With deeply nuanced reporting, and a style that’s both big-hearted and unsentimental, Playing through the Whistle isn’t merely the history of an American town, but American history itself.” Mark Kriegel, author of Namath

Reviews

Reviews

Author

Author Bio: S. L. Price

S. L. Price, a senior writer at Sports Illustrated since 1994, is the author of Heart of the Game; Pitching around Fidel, which was a finalist for the Los Angeles Times Book Prize; and Far Afield, which Esquire named one of the top five reads of 2007. He lives in Washington, DC, with his family.

Titles by Author

Details

Details

Available Formats : Digital Download, Digital Rental, CD, MP3 CD
Category: Nonfiction/Sports & Recreation
Runtime: 15.29
Audience: Adult
Language: English