Feature Book of the Week # 9 Rush for Gold by John Feinstein

Tuesday, October 29, 2013


Feature Book of the Week 
Rush for Gold 
by 
John Feinstein



Bestselling sportswriter and Edgar Award winner John Feinstein is back with another sports mystery featuring Stevie Thomas and Susan Carol Anderson—this one set at the summer Olympics in London.  In this book, Susan Carol isn't a reporter—she's an Olympian, competing as a swimmer at her first Olympic games. Stevie is both proud and envious of her athletic prowess. And he's worried by the agents and sponsors and media all wanting to get up close and personal with Susan Carol.  But the more disturbing question becomes—how far might they go to ensure that America's newest Olympic darling wins gold?   

Sports novels abound, but Feinstein's books are all stars. They combine sports action, high-stakes mysteries, and behind-the-scenes glimpses of big-time sporting events.


About the Author

John Feinstein spent years on the staff at the Washington Post, as well as writing forSports Illustrated and the National Sports Daily. He is a commentator on NPR's "Morning Edition," a regular on ESPN's "The Sports Reporters" and a visiting professor of journalism at Duke University.

His first book, A Season on the Brink, is the bestselling sports book of all time. His first book for younger readers, Last Shot, was a bestseller. His current book for younger readers is Vanishing Act.


A conversation with John Feinstein


Q: LAST SHOT and VANISHING ACT feature two budding young journalists. Do you hope to inspire more children to pick up the pen with this novel?

A:I think I'm a little bit like Bobby Kelleher in that I think it is important to steer kids to writing–and journalism–and not TV, which is the easy and popular way to go these days. TV is more glamorous, no doubt, but I know from personal experience that writing–and reporting–is far more fulfilling. I hope this book carries that message in some way...


Q: How old were you when you started writing? Did you always know you wanted to be a writer?

A:I spent most of my boyhood planning to be either the point guard for the Knicks or play centerfield for the Mets. By the time I went to college–as a swimmer–I knew that wasn't happening. I started working at the Duke student newspaper as a freshman and was pretty much hooked on journalism by the end of my freshman year.


Q: Several real sports journalists play roles in your books. Are any of them aware that they are in your book? And how do they feel about the way you portray them?

A:All the real people in the book are aware of their, "involvement." Most are amused; some are flattered; Tony Kornheiser has promised to sue me...


Q: LAST SHOT features a serious conspiracy. Has anything comparable ever happened in the history of the Final Four?

A:Point shaving scandals have been a problem in college basketball dating to the 1950s, when the sport was wracked by them, notably at City College of New York (which never recovered) and Kentucky. There have been numerous other point shaving scandals since then: Boston College in the early 80s; Tulane in 1985 and a rumor, never proven, that heavily-favored Nevada-Las Vegas dumped its 1991 Final Four game to Duke.

Q: Your first two books were mysteries. Since then you have written all non-fiction. How did it feel to return to the “whodunit” genre?


A:It was fun writing a mystery again; challenging to try to create a believable story in an environment that actually exists. The main difference between this and my other two mysteries is that the protagonists do not use a lot of the words used by the people in my first two mysteries.


Q: What were some of your favorite books growing up?
A:As a kid I read all the "Hardy Boys," books and "Chip Hilton," and "Bronc Burnett," both series about star athletes. I also read all the Signature and Landmark books, which really got me into history. When I got older I was very into historical novels: Johnny Tremainremains an all time favorite (recently read by my son) and, for some reason, I vividly remember reading, Journey to the Center of the Earth.






15 Delicious Comments:

Anonymous said...

This book was okay...I mean, it wasn't my personal favorite, but that's probably just because I'm not a huge fan of mysteries, or swimming, for that matter. It was still pretty good though. I liked Stevie a lot...yeah that's it... (that book mentioned credentials a LOT...)
-Hazelwood West Middle

Anonymous said...

This book is full of plenty of hungryness


Wentzville Middle School

Anonymous said...

This is AMAZING!! Even though I read this so long ago I can still remember
when Susan Carol got 2nd place.#AMAZING
-Wentzville Middle School

lmslibrary said...

we thought the mystery portion of the book was a little slow to start. i kept waiting for it to kick in. also i'm not totally okay with how Susan's dad is treating her and seems all about the money and ignoring her best interests.

Ladue Middle School

Anonymous said...

This book seems like a cool read. I'll check it out some soon.

Hazelwood Southeast Middle School

Anonymous said...

I don't think that this was the best book ever. But, I liked it. The book was moving too slow for my taste, though.

Hazelwood Southeast Middle School

Anonymous said...

Any fan of the Olympics will like this book! There aren't many swimming books out there so it was a nice change of pace.

St. Clare of Assisi

Anonymous said...

This book was interesting and a quick read, but I didn't like how the mystery was only at the end. I used this book for a book report that was supposed to focus on the mystery aspect, and it was a harder mystery to write about. I have not read any of the other books in the series, so maybe I would have liked it better if I had.

St. Clare of Assisi

Anonymous said...

I've heard some mixed reviews about this book, but either way, I'm excited to read it! :)

~Hazelwood West Middle School

Anonymous said...

This looks like a good book ^_^

hazelwood west middle school

Anonymous said...

I just checked this out from the library! I can't wait to read it! :)

Hazelwood west middle

Anonymous said...

I started this, and it's okay. Not the best. And I'm a little confused whether Susan Carol or Stevie is the main character. I guess I'll have to read more into it to find out :)

Hazelwood West Middle School

Anonymous said...

Is it just me, or does the author seem to be stereotyping southern accents? Hmm... probably just me.

-Hazelwood West Middle School

Anonymous said...

This book wasn't my favorite...then again, I'm not a huge fan of mysteries...
-Hazelwood West Middle

Anonymous said...

If you are a swimmer, or enjoy sports and the Olympics in general, you will LOVE this book! ;D

-Hazelwood West Middle School

 
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