"There has never been a QB like Steve Young, and there has never been a football memoir quite like [this one.] Young's battles with anxiety make you forget you are reading about a Hall of Famer, and make you root for him at every turn." —Michael Rosenberg
I'm not a sports memoir kinda gal. Pretty sure the last (only?) one I read was Chris Evert's when I was around 10 and on my way to becoming the next tennis phenom. (In my head, anyway.) I blame Nancy Drew for ending my short-lived foray into sports memoirs, and while I'm throwing blame around, my failed tennis dreams as well. There wasn't time for hitting the courts or perusing memoirs—Nancy and I had mysteries to solve!
So even though I have connections to Steve Young (one brother is a close friend and one is president of his foundation), I can't say I jumped at the prospect of reading his book. Because again...it's a sports memoir. Then I watched ESPN's A Football Life: Steve Young (a short documentary on Steve's career with excerpts from the book) and suddenly this sports memoir became the very book I wanted to read next. And boy am I glad I did.
This book is about so much more than football. It's about what it takes to fight your way from 8th string quarterback to All-American, how a friendship formed in room 9023 proved life-sustaining, and how one of the best quarterbacks in NFL history secretly faced an inward foe far more menacing than any defensive lineman. I was hooked from the first chapter of this inspiring page-turner. You read that right, I said page-turner. As Jim Nantz writes, "[Steve's] passion, preparation, and attention to detail are so vivid you'll feel as though this QB put you right in the middle of a huddle of life."
QB: My Life Behind the Spiral is one of those rare finds that can claim both a 16-year-old pigskin enthusiast and an 87-year-old grandma as ardent fans. It's a great story, well-told. Doesn't get better than that.
*Click here for a great interview with Steve Young about the his book on CBS Sunday Morning.