Now I Can Die in Peace: How ESPN's Sports Guy Found Salvation, with a Little Help from Nomar, Pedro, Shawshank and the 2004

Now I Can Die in Peace: How ESPN's Sports Guy Found Salvation, with a Little Help from Nomar, Pedro, Shawshank and the 2004

The New York Times bestseller Now I Can Die in Peace is now available in paperback with a new afterword (and more footnotes) by the author "The Red Sox won the World Series." To Citizen No. 1 of Red Sox Nation, those seven words meant "No more ‘1918’ chants. No more smug glances from Yankee fans. No more worrying about living an entire life -- that’s eighty years, followed...

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Title:Now I Can Die in Peace: How ESPN's Sports Guy Found Salvation, with a Little Help from Nomar, Pedro, Shawshank and the 2004
Author:Bill Simmons
Rating:
Edition Language:English

Now I Can Die in Peace: How ESPN's Sports Guy Found Salvation, with a Little Help from Nomar, Pedro, Shawshank and the 2004 Reviews

  • Chelsea

    Now that I've finished it, my review is pretty much the same. (Footnotes!) And, really, Red Sox fans will love the book, anyone who hates the Yankees will like the book, and anyone who thinks

    is the best movie of all time will adore the book.

    Really, though - Simmons references eit

    Now that I've finished it, my review is pretty much the same. (Footnotes!) And, really, Red Sox fans will love the book, anyone who hates the Yankees will like the book, and anyone who thinks

    is the best movie of all time will adore the book.

    Really, though - Simmons references either

    ,

    , or

    in literally every column, and sometimes all three. Want to know who on the 2001 Red Sox would play who on

    ? Check out page 151.

    Once again, I'm pretty happy with any book that name checks my baseball husband, Kevin Youkilis, but Simmons goes one step further and gives us this sentence (and accompanying footnote): "The farm system is teeming with prospects like Craig Hansen, Jon Lester, Jacoby Ellsbury, and Edgar Martinez. (I just included that sentence in case none of those guys pans out and you can giggle to yourself about it 25 years from now. I'm thoughtful that way.)" Sorry, Bill, but you're batting a solid

    .

    Hmm. Make that .666?

    And, finally, reading about the 2004 ALCS will never,

    get old. Oh, Dave Roberts.

    Plus I have to make my mother read it, because he defends Damon signing with the Yankees.

  • Kate Quinn

    For a Red Sox fan, Bill Simmons is the ultimate: he is sharp, he is funny, he knows his team, and he makes absolutely no pretense at being fair. My own memories of the miraculous 2004 win over the Yankees and the Cardinals include the systematic destruction of my fingernails, a lot of agonized whimpering, and the consumption of enough straight rum to destroy my stomach lining. Bill Simmons recalls that hectic and marvelous time much more eloquently and humorously in this account of the Red Sox's

    For a Red Sox fan, Bill Simmons is the ultimate: he is sharp, he is funny, he knows his team, and he makes absolutely no pretense at being fair. My own memories of the miraculous 2004 win over the Yankees and the Cardinals include the systematic destruction of my fingernails, a lot of agonized whimpering, and the consumption of enough straight rum to destroy my stomach lining. Bill Simmons recalls that hectic and marvelous time much more eloquently and humorously in this account of the Red Sox's miraculous stampede to the championship. His footnotes alone are worth the price of the book.

  • AJ Griffin

    When i was about 7, I used the money I was given for my dad's birthday gift to buy him a sweet baseball/hockey/football game for our computer; when my mother gently questioned the selflessness of this gift, I insisted that it was the kind of thing he would love and it

    because i wanted it for myself.

    Of course I was lying. I was 7.

    Anyway, I did the same thing about 10 years later when I bought this for him. On the one hand, I used my own money, and it was something he would/di

    When i was about 7, I used the money I was given for my dad's birthday gift to buy him a sweet baseball/hockey/football game for our computer; when my mother gently questioned the selflessness of this gift, I insisted that it was the kind of thing he would love and it

    because i wanted it for myself.

    Of course I was lying. I was 7.

    Anyway, I did the same thing about 10 years later when I bought this for him. On the one hand, I used my own money, and it was something he would/did enjoy. On the other hand, I was still sneaking into his bedroom, stealing the book and reading it until he got home. What can I say? Bill Simmons is the Klosterman of sports (except, i guess, when Klosterman is writing about sports), and I love the Red Sox.

  • Stefanie

    For real Red Sox fans only! Simmons is the funniest sports writer ever, this is the kind of book that made me laugh out loud on the T. It's taken me a while to get through, but I love it every time I pick it up.

  • Gyoh80525

    This book is a series of columns written by the author (who is currently a columnist for espn.com) about what it was like to see the Red Sox win the World Series for the first time in 86 years. It is that actual columns written at the time with commentary written a few years later. The book is at times brutally funny (like when the author describes the "Tom Cruise face". Basically he's trying to look sad when Goose dies in Top Gun but it really looks like he is trying to take a dump) and at othe

    This book is a series of columns written by the author (who is currently a columnist for espn.com) about what it was like to see the Red Sox win the World Series for the first time in 86 years. It is that actual columns written at the time with commentary written a few years later. The book is at times brutally funny (like when the author describes the "Tom Cruise face". Basically he's trying to look sad when Goose dies in Top Gun but it really looks like he is trying to take a dump) and at other times touchingly sad (like when the author debates whether he should raise his child to root for his team because being a Red Sox fan can be so painful).

    One reason I read books is to be transported to another person's reality (whether made up or real) and to see his perspective. This book gives me a glimpse into the life of someone who has cheered for a team all his life but the team keeps losing in tragic fashion. Someone who begins to fear that he might live a full life and never see his team win. It gives me a perspective that I could never have had on my own. In the end I really sympathized for him and am now a little more glad that the Red Sox did finally win.

    In fact, I might just now root for the Cubs. (OK, maybe not!)

  • Tyler

    Tyler Succi

    11/2/11

    Plot Summary:

    What this book is about is a guy named Bill Simmons being a HUGE sports fan. Particularly a Red Sox/ New England fan. He really focuses on the Red Sox most. He has a lot of interesting facts about them and talks about the "curse" a lot too. Bill himself is really the main character. Other characters he mentions is the "sports gal", he wedding buds, and his dad. He doesn't really bring names into the story at all. The book itself is more like a story of a period in

    Tyler Succi

    11/2/11

    Plot Summary:

    What this book is about is a guy named Bill Simmons being a HUGE sports fan. Particularly a Red Sox/ New England fan. He really focuses on the Red Sox most. He has a lot of interesting facts about them and talks about the "curse" a lot too. Bill himself is really the main character. Other characters he mentions is the "sports gal", he wedding buds, and his dad. He doesn't really bring names into the story at all. The book itself is more like a story of a period in his life were he really paid attention to all the New England sports. He goes to plenty of Red Sox games and talks about the players, coaches, and the stadium itself. He always talks about his new seat or how he buys his tickets off a scalper out front.

    Opinion:

    I liked the book. It was kind of a funny read. Wasn't exactly what I was expecting to read the whole time. There was DEFINITELY a lot of facts and I enjoyed that. I really found out things I never knew being a Sox fan. I would recommend it to anyone who likes a simple read about someone who travels around to games. Its really just about his life. It's half and half of a autobiography and just a sports book. I probably wouldn't read this again unless I really had to. Bill did a great job writing it. It's definitely from his view through out the whole entire book. I liked that aspect of the book. His vocabulary used isn't that hard but does make you pay attention to the parts. There were a few areas in the book I wasn't interested in reading and was dry. I felt the need to just put the book back down yet again, there were parts where I wanted to keep reading it to see what was going to happen. There was a lot of points that would make you be extremely curious to what goes on. Lot of rising points that went on.

    Rating & Ratinoal:

    Out of 5, 5 being the best, I would give this book a 4.5. It was a good book to read. Mr. Gagnon just gave me a book to read because I had asked him to surprise me with one. He chose a good book and I thank him for it. Even though the book was good, I would recommend it but I wouldn't ever read it again. Without the dry parts of reading I went through.

  • Patrick McGrady

    This book really resonated with me because I am a Sox fan and I remember riding this roller coaster when it happened. In my eyes, few can articulate and express the feelings of the crazed fan the way Bill Simmons can. From the melodramatic lows to the euphoric highs, Bill is the voice of the biased, passionate and slightly psychotic "Boston Sports Fan".

    Long Live the Boston Sports Guy.

  • Tara

    I don't like the Red Sox OR the Yankees, but I appreciate Simmons' humor and the fact that he's a true Sox fan and not a bandwagoner. I almost died reading pages 265-273, being an Angels fan myself (when you cut us, we bleed too, Bill! We bleed too!)* Incidentally, the season this book highlights marks the season I really, and I mean really, started to dislike the Red Sox. What I do like is Simmons' approach to being a fan. And I will give him this... he is more emotionally invested in his teams

    I don't like the Red Sox OR the Yankees, but I appreciate Simmons' humor and the fact that he's a true Sox fan and not a bandwagoner. I almost died reading pages 265-273, being an Angels fan myself (when you cut us, we bleed too, Bill! We bleed too!)* Incidentally, the season this book highlights marks the season I really, and I mean really, started to dislike the Red Sox. What I do like is Simmons' approach to being a fan. And I will give him this... he is more emotionally invested in his teams than almost anyone I know. So five stars for writing like a true fan, but minus two because I just cannot stand the Red Sox.

    *I remember watching those painful games, seeing my team choke, and then actually hoping the Yankees would win because I was so bitter about that loss. And this wasn't the last time the Halos would choke against the Sox. Ugh. Also, this applies with the 2008 Lakers/Celtics NBA Finals. I do not like Boston.

  • Helen

    MEh...

    I picked this book up because I got a little teary eyed during the homerun derby this year, with Nomar and Curt providing commentary. I wanted to relive some of what we went through in 2004, and I got that, but I also got old blog posts from 2000-2003 as well, plus distracting footnotes that weren't funny and tired old pop culture references that, again, weren't funny.

    It wasn't all bad though. When Simmons is talking about how his heart was broken as a kid in '86, I remembered my son in 2

    MEh...

    I picked this book up because I got a little teary eyed during the homerun derby this year, with Nomar and Curt providing commentary. I wanted to relive some of what we went through in 2004, and I got that, but I also got old blog posts from 2000-2003 as well, plus distracting footnotes that weren't funny and tired old pop culture references that, again, weren't funny.

    It wasn't all bad though. When Simmons is talking about how his heart was broken as a kid in '86, I remembered my son in 2003, who slept with his Red Sox bat every night and went to bed before the infamous "Why doesn't Grady take Pedro out?" game assured that our team would win. And how I felt the next morning, telling him it wasn't to be. Again.Simmons railing on the Fox commentators during the playoff games with the Yankees and the World Series with St Louis, getting Bronson Arroyo's name wrong, flashing way too many Babe Ruth pictures, yes. I remember all that too, and it's good to remember. But there are better books about the Red Sox out there, with better, shorter, titles. If you want to relive and remember, good find those books.

  • Matt

    It's hard for anyone to write a book about the things they love, I think, and it's especially hard when that love borders on the masochistic and obsessive - what else can you do but vent, gush, and pontificate about the significance of your emotions? About the only way to make such an effort work is to gear it to your fellow sufferers as testament and therapy, which explains why Kahlil Gibran is featured in every crappy wedding vow, why Charles Bukowski has such godlike status in AA, and why fel

    It's hard for anyone to write a book about the things they love, I think, and it's especially hard when that love borders on the masochistic and obsessive - what else can you do but vent, gush, and pontificate about the significance of your emotions? About the only way to make such an effort work is to gear it to your fellow sufferers as testament and therapy, which explains why Kahlil Gibran is featured in every crappy wedding vow, why Charles Bukowski has such godlike status in AA, and why fellow Red Sox martyrs aged 28-52 responded so wildly to

    , one of the messiest, nerdiest paeans to undying love that I hope I ever read.

    I should preface this review by saying that while I sorta like Bill Simmons, I think he's a sportswriting equivalent of what old baseball writers used to call "press box hot", a phenomenon in which a kinda pretty girl suddenly looks like a top model when set against the heifers in the press box. Compared to most of the windbags, blowhards, and schmaltz merchants who infest contemporary sports journalism, Simmons has the wit of PG Wodehouse and the common sense of Thomas Paine, and considering how much fun sports are to follow he's naturally a favorite of every sports fan with a brain and a sense of humor: after all, he seems to be the only writer with a meaningful platform in the entire industry who comes even close to Getting It, and as such is the incidental champion of millions. At his best -- very infrequent these days -- Simmons is as good as any comic-minded sportswriter, and anybody reading this review who hasn't read his "Atrocious GM Summit" or his "Idiot's Guide to the Isiah Trial" needs to get to Google posthaste.

    That said, outside of the world of sports writers, Simmons looks good but not great: though he can be thoughtful and sharp, he's really not a 'writer' per se, but more of a talker whose preferred audience is a word processor screen. He never does much with language itself, and his analysis tends to ramble, contradict itself, and worst of all, detour into all these excruciating lists and scales and arbitrary nerd metrics (The Vengeance Scale, a 50-item Wonderlich test to determine true Red Sox fans, the 18 reasons one can root for a team, etc.) that make this reader crumble in despair. All his faults tend to proliferate when he writes about teams he loves, probably because he can't pause or self-edit -- he thinks he can, but I think his idea of 'editing' is too often polishing up ideas that were misguided to begin with -- which brings me to an unhappy verdict.

    This book sucks. It combines the worst features of a diary -- tics and foibles and regrettable displays -- with the glibness of a sports bar argument -- unconnected or unexplained passages, scads of distracting footnotes -- while making virtually no attempt to evoke why anyone would be a baseball fan, just giving a numbing catalog of the minutiae and badinage of those who were born one. Like any diary the book is almost without a narrative, which means that if you don't own DVD's of Sox seasons from 1998-2004, you'll be lost every other page ... and none of this complaining even begins to address Simmons' proclivity for pop culture metaphors, which are lazy and perishable in the first place and crippling for a writer who supposedly has an eye on posterity: half the jokes in here expired the week they were written. Some funny one-liners still sparkle here and there, but ultimately this is as much of an ordeal to read as it must've been to live. The worst thing is that this book didn't have to suck: it's just riddled with straight-up bad writing and self-indulgence. I suppose that for Simmons this book was a personal Zihuantanejo, and I respect that, but for non-Sox freaks it's just that 500-meter tunnel of shit that Andy had to crawl through to get out of his cell. Let this one die in peace, or at least the remainder bin, and let's hope for a lot of improvement in Simmons' forthcoming history of the NBA.

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