|Publish Date:||May 2012|
|Number of Pages:||1334|
|Shipping Weight (in pounds):||3.66|
|Product in Inches (L x W x H):||7.2 x 2.5 x 9.1|
Wallechinsky has compiled eight previous editions of this work, along with its companion volume, The Complete Book of the Winter Olympics. Each appears just ahead of the upcoming games, and both hard-core and casual fans welcome its appearance. With its mix of sport records, trivia, and colorful anecdotes, the text offers an encyclopedic guide to the event. The bulk of the material is made up of a sport-by-sport statistical recap, listing each event, year held, and location; top-eight finishers and their country of origin; and other facts.
Coverage includes discontinued sports such as tug-of-war (held 1900-20) and the 200-meter obstacle swimming race (held only once, in 1900), which forced competitors to scramble over a pole and a row of boats, then swim under a row of boats. For most events, a brief, well-chosen anecdote describes what happened and/or discusses competitors, adding memorable details. Black-and-white photos appear throughout. The 27 modern Olympics have seen their share of political scandals, cheating, drugs, and other issues; an introductory overview provides a balanced discussion of these ups and downs.
Verdict: This resource will enhance appreciation of the Olympics for fans and casual viewers alike; it belongs in most libraries.
-Marilyn Taniguchi, Beverly Hills P.L., CA
(c) Copyright 2012. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
David Wallechinsky's compendious book has long been the preeminent point of reference for sports enthusiasts and journalists alike Every sports writer assigned to cover the Games ensures they have their early copy of this prodigious work of reference, packed with absorbing anecdotes and essential statistics. A treasure trove of 116 years of Olympic history, it is also an amazingly readable book, for in the course of recording every single Olympic final since 1896, it concentrates on the strange, the memorable, and the unbelievable.
Who knew (until reading this book) that croquet was once an Olympic sport, or tug of war, or that a 72-year-old once won a silver medal for target shooting? This new edition also has every finals result, recorded by the top eight competitors in every event at the Beijing Olympics, and full descriptions of rules and scoring for every event included for 2012. It is the one truly essential Olympics book.