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High Above Courtside

Dr. Harvey Frommer on Sports

Sports Book Review

Johnny Most was the long time (37 seasons a play-by-play man) beloved voice of Boston Celtic basketball. "High Above Courtside" by Mike Carey with Jamie Most (SportsPublishingLLC, $24.95, 425 pages) is at once a tribute, an autobiography, a time machine. Its sub-title proclaims that it is "the lost memoirs of Johnny Most," and that is probably what is the essence of the book most of all.

We are there with Johnny, the Jewish kid from New York, the WWII hero who earned seven battle stars as an aerial gunner on a B-24. We are there with him through the Celtic years (" Cream of the Crop," "Auerbach and Russell," "Havlicek Stole the Ball," "Heinsohn Takes Center Stage," and on and on.

With an introduction by Red Auerbach and with an epilogue by Larry Bird,  "High Above Courtside" is an important book about the world of the Boston Celtics and by extension of pro basketball. This worthy read belongs in prominent place on your sports bookshelf.

"1,001 Reasons to Love Golf" by Mary Tiegreen and Hubert Pedroli (Stewart, Talbori and Chang, $24.95, 320 fully illustrated pages) celebrates experiences, thoughts and   special moments. It is at once a lovely book to  look at and an encyclopedia of golf that yields much fascinating information.

From Hyperion Publishers comes "ESPN Sports Almanac 2004" ($12.99, almost a thousand pages) of stats, lists, essays, analysis. If you are into sports reference - this is the book for you.

Also from Hyperion is "In the Paint" by writer-producer Andrew Gottlieb ($16.95, 112 pages trade paperback). This tome clearly shows that any subject is fair game for a sports book. In full color and not so full text - the tattoos sported by NBA players and the stories behind them are given the up close and perhaps too personal treatment. Factoid:  Alan Iverson leads the league with more than two dozen tattoos. If you want to know what's on Karl Malone's leg or Chris Webber's chest - "In the Paint" will let you know.

For the hockey zealots out there Firefly Books LTD has "Total Hockey Conditioning: From Pee Wee to Pro" by Tudor Bompa and Dave Chambers ($19.95, 204 pages). In words, charts, pictures the author offer direction for all age groups for working on strength, power, speed, muscular endurance, agility and movement time. The book is quite a workout.

"The Tournament" by John Clarke (Hyperion, $19.95, 279 pages) is a page turning novel of the 20th century  - odd, unusual, brilliant. The tennis tournament that Clarke describes has figures like Albert Einstein, Vincent Van Gogh and Sigmund Freud in the top rankings. These great thinkers and others take part in a two week, 500 player tennis match. Read on!

SOUND BYTES: Unabridged and available now from Harper Audio at $34.95, ten hours - "Sandy Koufax" by Jane Leavy and "Ten Rings by Yogi Berra with Dave Kaplan, $25.95, five hours The former is read by Charley Steiner while the latter is read by Yogi's son Dale.


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You can reach Harvey Frommer at:   

Email:  harvey.frommer@Dartmouth.EDU 

About the Author:

Harvey Frommer is in his  38th year of writing books. A noted oral historian and sports journalist, the author of 42 sports books including the classics: "New York City Baseball,1947-1957" and "Shoeless Joe and Ragtime Baseball," his acclaimed REMEMBERING YANKEE STADIUM was published in 2008 and his REMEMBERING FENWAY PARK: AN ORAL AND NARRATIVE HISTORY OF THE HOME OF RED SOX NATION was published to acclaim in 2011.  The prolific Frommer is at work on When It Was Just a Game, An Oral History on Super Bowel One. 

His work has appeared in the New York Times, Los Angeles Times, Washington Post, New York Daily News, Newsday, USA Today, Men's Heath, The Sporting News, among other publications.

FROMMER SPORTSNET (syndicated) reaches a readership in the millions and is housed on Internet search engines for extended periods of time.
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Dr. Frommer is the Official Book Reviewer of Travel-Watch. 
*Autographed copies of Frommer books are available .

Other Frommer sports related articles can be found at:   

Harvey Frommer along with his wife, Myrna Katz  Frommer are the authors of five critically acclaimed oral/cultural histories, professors at Dartmouth  College, and travel writers who specialize in cultural history, food, wine, and Jewish history and heritage in the United States, Europe, and the Caribbean. 

This Article is Copyright 1995 - 2014 by Harvey Frommer.  All rights reserved worldwide.

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