After seeing the movie I was curious about the book and though I'm not a big football fan decided to give it a read.
The story is well written and Michael Oher's story is compelling. I'd been curious about the Racism vs. Ole Miss angle as it was not emphasized in the film and knowing what I did of Ole Miss's history I was curious. This was covered very well in the book.
I was a bit daunted by depth of the coverage of the evolution of football in the book but I can't say I wasn't warned... The title indicated as much. Mostly the explanations of football strategy were very good and I followed most of it though I'm in no way a fan of the game. There were a few sections (particularly when the footnotes got to be close to half a page) when the football details became too much for me but I'm sure that dyed in the wool fans loved it.
Even the sections on Lawrence Taylor and and Steve Wallace, and John Ayers were eminently readable, even for a non-fan.
If you're a sports fan or if you've got one on your gift list, this may well be a great buy. If you'd rather not learn a lot about football but are still curious about the Michael Oher story, by all means, check out the movie.
I loved the movie, but the book ruined it for me. The family comes across as paternalistic and opportunistic, while Michael is just a boy who needs help. At the end of the day, there is a reason why the NCAA qualifying GPA was the magical number to reach. Overall, I was left upset and annoyed by the book, where there was none of the soul searching that redeems the parents somewhat in the movie. Also, there was too much about the technicalities and recent historical developments in football.
I'm not a very eloquent writer, so I'll keep this short and sweet. This book is fabulous.
I thought the book was interesting. It certainly was not the same book as the movie, which, it turns out, provides a star vehicle for Sandra Bullock.
Nevertheless, I learned a lot about football...which I do enjoy.
But in the long football narratives dragged the book a bit.
Still, I do recommend it!