Thursday, March 27, 2014


I'm a reader. Not as much now as I used to be (it's said that I read the entire nine-book Little House on the Prairie series before I turned six), but I do still enjoy a good book.

For the past several years, my concentration has been on growing my book collection in two areas - autobiographies & biographies and sports books. I'm very glad to have added several titles under both headings, as well as some books that fit in both categories.

Photo: Google Images/
     If you were to look for softball books in Barnes & Noble or Books-a-Million or on, you'd probably come up with quite a stack. Many of the biggest names in the sport (Weekly, Finch, Michele Smith, Gary Leland, Stacie Mahoe, Kempf, Garman, Enquist, Bristow, Jacquie Joseph, to name a few) have all written excellent "manuals" that can help a player's game in some aspect, whether it be defensively, mentally, offensively, or even off the field entirely.

     When you begin to whittle that list down to books that are more "memoir" than "instruction", the list almost disappears entirely. Sure, coaches rely on their own experiences when giving instruction. That's a given. But I mean books that are more autobiographical in nature as a whole. There aren't many in the sport of softball.

     Ex-Washington star Bailey Stenson wrote a blog during the Huskies' WCWS-championship run in 2009, then put all of the posts together into a neat book. (We're actually giving a signed copy of this book away later this year, so keep an eye out!)

     There are so many awesome people in the sport of softball that have been around the game for so long, I just know they could write a book! One of the names that jumps out at me when I think about someone who fits that bill is Mike Candrea, Arizona head coach and former Team USA skipper.

After close to thirty years at the helm of the Wildcats program, as well as a significant portion of time heading up the US National team, there's no doubt that not only would Candrea have a lot of wisdom to share, but also some great stories!

     Another player whose memoir I'd like to read is actually another Wildcat. Stacie Chambers had such an interesting and amazing story (part of which she shared in my interview with her, shared here). After suffering an injury such as she did, coming so close to breaking the NCAA home run record and falling just short, I think she'd have a unique perspective on the game and a gripping comeback story to tell to the reader.

     Now it's your turn - I want to know whose manuscript YOU would like to read! Do you prefer autobiographies, or are the "instruction manuals" more your speed? Do you identify more with a coach's point of view, or like reading recounts from out on the field? Leave a comment here or on Facebook and let me hear what you have to say!

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