Playing For Pizza
- Publication Date:
- 26 May 2011
- Modern & Contemporary
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The last John Grisham book I read was The Firm. That was when it had just come out.This is a marvelous little way to spend sometime before gameday. Perhaps the premise is a little far fetched. (Can the third QB get into that much trouble at a championship game?) But once our protagonist moves on and gets to Italy, we get a little of that Tom Selleck, Mr. Baseball thing going. It moves quickly and resolves well.Ultimately it is a story of finding a way to marry what we love with reality and not superstar expectations that can never be true.I would recommend it not only to my friends who like football, but also to those who just like a good story.
What a fun and wonderful book and the reader really brought the book to life.Rick Dockery has now become the laughing stock of the NFL, loved by the Denver fans and hated by the Cleveland fans, and sought after by a cheerleader's lawyers, Rick's agent Arnie decides that Rick needs a change of scenery.So Rick heads to Parma Italy, home of the Parma Panthers a Italian NFL team trying to make it big in a country that loves it's soccer. It's less money and no glory, but Rick needs to get away.Enter the American coach, Sam and Rick's two American teammates and all the Italian players. What you get then is a look at Italian life and what drives the players in Italy. Add in a love interest later and you have the makings for a book that catches your attention and you don't want it to end.This was a great book and the characters were well-developed. Watching Rick change and meeting the Italians made this book. Very character driven and you find yourself rooting for the Parma Panthers through the book.
"Under the Tuscan Sun" (movie version) meets "Bull Durham". Obviously written with the movie rights in mind, yet strangely refreshing, light, and nice to read. Will it be a 21st century classic in 50 years. Well, no. But does it entertain today? Yes. It's a masterpiece of writing for what it is intended to be. And let's give credit for that. Much like a Tom Clancy novel, it does not pretend to be serious. Like it's title, it's pizza and beer for Monday Night Football.
It's amazing that so many disliked this story... "it's about football", "Dockery's a jerk", "Grisham should stick with law stories", etc. I think that's too bad, because in amongst all the eating and football lies a story of a young man finding and facing his own weaknesses, and learning to overcome them. I think this is one of Grisham's better stories. It makes me want to visit Italy... heck it makes me want to live in Italy, and become part of the culture, and not just for the food and drink, but for the comaraderie, the wisdom, and the challenges. If a story can make me feel that way, well what more can you ask for?
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