"Tough, straight, upsetting, and strangely beautiful. One of the best sports autobiographies I've ever read. It comes from the heart." —Stephen King Eclipsing the traditional sports memoir, House of Nails, by former world champion, multimillionaire entrepreneur, and imprisoned felon Lenny Dykstra, spins a tragicomic tale of Shakespearean proportions -- a relentlessly entertaining American epic that careens between the heights and the abyss. Nicknamed "Nails" for his hustle and grit, Lenny approached the game of baseball -- and life -- with mythic intensity. During his decade in the majors as a center fielder for the legendary 1980s Mets and the 1990s Phillies, he was named to three All-Star teams and played in two of the most memorable World Series of the modern era. An overachiever known for his clutch hits, high on-base percentage, and aggressive defense, Lenny was later identified by his former minor-league roommate Billy Beane as the prototypical "Moneyball" player in Michael Lewis's bestseller. Tobacco-stained, steroid-powered, and booze-and-drug-fueled, Nails also defined a notorious era of excess in baseball. Then came a second act no novelist could plausibly conjure: After retiring, Dykstra became a celebrated business mogul and investment guru. Touted as "one of the great ones" by CNBC's Jim Cramer, he became "baseball's most improbable post-career success story" (The New Yorker), purchasing a $17.5-million mansion and traveling the world by private jet. But when the economy imploded in 2008, Lenny lost everything. Then the feds moved in: convicted of bankruptcy fraud (unjustly, he contends), Lenny served two and a half harrowing years in prison, where he was the victim of a savage beating by prison guards that knocked out his front teeth. The Daily Show's Jon Stewart, channeling the bewildered fascination of many observers, declared that Lenny's outrageous rise and spectactular fall was "the greatest story that I have ever seen in my lifetime." Now, for the first time, Lenny tells all about his tumultuous career, from battling through crippling pain to steroid use and drug addiction, to a life of indulgence and excess, then, an epic plunge and the long road back to redemption. Was Lenny's hard-charging, risk-it-all nature responsible for his success in baseball and business and his precipitous fall from grace? What lessons, if any, has he learned now that he has had time to think and reflect? Hilarious, unflinchingly honest, and irresistibly readable, House of Nails makes no apologies and leaves nothing left unsaid.
house of nails a memoir of life on the edge
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The outspoken center fielder of the New York Mets tells the inside story of the team's '86 season, with details on their victories in the playoffs and the World Series and insights into the team's off-the-field controversies
On a muggy, late August afternoon in 1936, somewhere along the banks of Greasy Creek, Life found Grace -- walking the dusty mile between work and home in a brand new pair of leather kitten-heeled pumps, blond curls bouncing in the sun. Two weeks later, Lifie Jay Preston and Grace Mollette married, a union that lasted until their deaths fifty-eight years later. There was something about them, their daughter Linda would discover, a kind of radiance and love of living that would mark them in the memories of every person they encountered -- a song that resonates years after their passing. Songs of Life and Grace is their story, told by the daughter whose own life grew out of their loving ministries and Appalachian sensibilities. Linda Scott DeRosier, the celebrated author of Creeker: A Woman's Journey, draws on family letters and lore, interviews, and her own recollections to reach a better understanding of her parents and the families that formed them both. Along the way, she introduces an unforgettable cast of characters: the formidable Grandma Emmy; Uncle Burns, an infamous ladies' man; helpless and simple Aunt Jo; and gentle Pop Pop, who could peel an apple in one long, unbroken spiral. A stirring, honest look at Appalachia and a tribute to the unbreakable bonds of family, Songs of Life and Grace establishes DeRosier as one of the most vital and exciting new voices of the American South.
This moving memoir recounts the story of a life well lived. With a positive attitude and an optimistic view, Fred Bull tells of his difficult upbringing in the Appalachian Mountains of Tennessee. After running away from home at the age of sixteen, he enlisted in the U.S. Army. He and his friends enjoyed traveling to different continents, serving their country in uniform in Korea, and constantly trying to adhere to their upbringing. Along the way, he became a husband and father, a musician and entertainer, and a cancer survivor. Honest and heartwarming, One Man's Walk through Life highlights some of the foundations of American society through the eyes of a hardworking man.
Comprehensive, reliable account of 17th-century life in one of the country's earliest settlements. Contemporary records, over 100 historically valuable pictures vividly describe early dwellings, furnishings, medicinal aids, wardrobes, trade, crimes, more.
First published in 1937, this woodworking classic reveals a fascinating look into the social structure of a 19th-century English town and a carpenter's place in it. Encapsulating a time prior to power tools and mass production, when woodworkers made virtually everything, Walter Rose writes eloquently on a number of topics, including running a country business; the carpenter's shop; working on a farm, new home, and windmill; undertaking; and furniture repairs. Manifesting the importance of skill and the attitudes of the craftsman to his tools and work, this book will be of great interest to any carpenter or woodworker with an appreciation for the history of their craft.
No one would disagree with the contention that the central figure in this semi-fictional work has been written about continuously for two millenniums. A continued interest in his life and commentary on it does seem timeless. It is the unanimous opinion in the Christian world that he is both true God and true man. Once they say it in good faith, they forget about his humanity and the frailties that come with it. They stay singularly preoccupied with his extra-terrestrial connection. This novel flips the preoccupation. It is a study of the real man. It is done so without diminishing the extraordinary events surrounding his life. The novel appears to be unique in that it allows the extraordinary man to talk for himself. It is unique in many ways. To name a few: there are weather reports, a calendar of events, his farm work, hours and mileage for his trips, his sport competitions, his high school days, and a man with a good sense of humor. A list of the fresh ways of looking at the man is long.
The Gift of an Ordinary Day is an intimate memoir of a family in transition-boys becoming teenagers, careers ending and new ones opening up, an attempt to find a deeper sense of place, and a slower pace, in a small New England town. It is a story of mid-life longings and discoveries, of lessons learned in the search for home and a new sense of purpose, and the bittersweet intensity of life with teenagers--holding on, letting go. Poised on the threshold between family life as she's always known it and her older son's departure for college, Kenison is surprised to find that the times she treasures most are the ordinary, unremarkable moments of everyday life, the very moments that she once took for granted, or rushed right through without noticing at all. The relationships, hopes, and dreams that Kenison illuminates will touch women's hearts, and her words will inspire mothers everywhere as they try to make peace with the inevitable changes in store.