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Pacific Rims: Beermen Ballin' in Flip-Flops and the Philippines' Unlikely Love Affair with Bas ketball (Englisch) Taschenbuch – 7. Juni 2011

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  • Taschenbuch: 408 Seiten
  • Verlag: NAL; Auflage: Reprint (7. Juni 2011)
  • Sprache: Englisch
  • ISBN-10: 0451233220
  • ISBN-13: 978-0451233226
  • Vom Hersteller empfohlenes Alter: Ab 18 Jahren
  • Größe und/oder Gewicht: 14 x 2,1 x 20,8 cm
  • Durchschnittliche Kundenbewertung: 4.0 von 5 Sternen  Alle Rezensionen anzeigen (1 Kundenrezension)
  • Amazon Bestseller-Rang: Nr. 308.306 in Fremdsprachige Bücher (Siehe Top 100 in Fremdsprachige Bücher)

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Von Peer Sylvester TOP 1000 REZENSENT am 5. September 2011
Format: Taschenbuch Verifizierter Kauf
Ist ein Sportbuch gut geschrieben, so macht es auch nichts aus, wenn man den Sport, um den es geht, gar nicht so toll findet. Was das betrifft, liefert Rafe Bartholomew auf ganzer Linie!

In Pacific Rims geht es um etwas eher exotisches: Die Philippinische Basketballliga und generell die Bedeutung Basketballs in der Gesellschaft der Philippinen. Denn die sind das einzige Land, in der Basketball Sport Nummer 1 (mit großem Abstand) ist - selbst in den USA sind Baseball und American Football beliebter. Warum ist das so? Warum gerade Basketball? Warum sind die Filipinos dennoch International nicht gerade erfolgreich? Diesen Fragen geht der Autor auf höchst unterhaltsame Weise nach. Dabei begleitet er ein Team durch die Saison und diese Begleitung dient als roter Faden, um die Kapitel zusammenzuhalten.

Pacific Rims ist ein sehr unterhaltsames und stellenweise echt witziges Buch. Der Autor pflegt einen lockeren Stil und einen trockenen Humor und flechtet nette Anekdoten - z.B. sein Mitwirken an einer philippinischen Soap - geschickt ein. Insgesamt ist das Buch vielleicht etwas zu lang, das eine oder andere wird etwas zu oft wiederholt und leider enthalten die Fotos in der Mitte des Buches einige Spoiler, die für die Spannung am Ende eher abkömmlich sind.

Doch das sind Details. Wichtig ist: Das Buch ist lesenswert und beleuchtet eine Sportswelt, die man so gar nicht kannte. Und das auf eine Weise, bei der man gar nicht merkt, dass einen das eigentlich gar nicht wirklich interessiert... :-)
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Die hilfreichsten Kundenrezensionen auf (beta) 39 Rezensionen
12 von 12 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
Excellent sports writing. 18. Juni 2010
Von Vic I. - Veröffentlicht auf
Format: Gebundene Ausgabe Verifizierter Kauf
I'm a basketball fan, an avid reader of sports journalism, and a Filipino. So I had high expectations for this book, and was not disappointed. It manages to be both scholarly and sidesplittingly funny at the same time.

Just like Jack McCallum's "Seven Seconds or Less", the author spends an entire season as an embedded journalist with a local professional ball club. However he alternates his fly-on-the-wall reportage of practices and player hijinks with well-researched chapters on past Pinoy sports heroes, defunct leagues, and the country's culture in general.

I noow realize that it takes an outsider's point of view to really put the bizarre yet wonderful world of Pinoy ball into perspective.
7 von 7 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
A joy to read 23. Januar 2011
Von Nate C-K - Veröffentlicht auf
Format: Gebundene Ausgabe Verifizierter Kauf
Overtly, this book is two stories spun into a single narrative:

- A general overview of the culture of basketball in the Philippines.
- The story of a single season ("conference") where the author follows a pro basketball team, the Alaska Aces, through their successes and struggles on and off the court.

However, perhaps the most important story in the book is that of a young man experiencing a new culture that he knew very little about before he arrived. The author arrives looking for something familiar, basketball, and through it discovers and attempts to explain much that is unfamiliar. The reader is taken along on this journey as well, and it's a lot of fun.

I myself have been to the Philippines several times, and I picked this book up at an airport bookstore in Manila. Even though I already knew a great deal about the country, I was pleased to learn tons of things that I didn't know before. Filipinos will probably also learn plenty, and even if they don't they will enjoy the author's perspective their culture.

You could undoubtedly write a much more comprehensive book about basketball in the Philippines than this one. The author makes a good effort to research the history of the sport there, but the brevity of his experience limits how much of an insider perspective he could really gain. Furthermore, his account of the present-day league lacks objectivity because he has become very close to the particular team that he covered. However, this does not negatively affect the book at all: it never pretends to give an objective appraisal of the league from a neutral point of view, but rather gives itself wholeheartedly to conveying a fan's sense of love for the game. This love rubs off on you as you read.

This book was a pleasure to read, and I laughed at loud every few pages. I read it mostly in one sitting, on my flight home from the Philippines; for weeks afterward I told everyone I knew about it. I am now passing it around to my friends, and I ordered a copy from Amazon to send to another friend abroad. In terms of sheer enjoyment this was one of the best books I have ever read, especially in the realm of non-fiction.
7 von 7 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
Long Overdue 8. Juni 2010
Von Thomas Churma - Veröffentlicht auf
Format: Gebundene Ausgabe Verifizierter Kauf
Well written. A very good read. This book should have been written long ago. It brought back memories of living, working and playing a whole lot of ball in the Philippines long ago.

The author captures the Filipinos' passion for the National Sport from barrio to big city and provides insight into this often misunderstood country as a Westerner immersed in the culture. Language and cuisine are important.

An Index (Personal Names, at the least) and a Bibliography would have been useful, but that just may be the librarian bias in me.

Thomas Churma
Kalamansi Books
4 von 4 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
Philippine hoops heaven 23. Juni 2010
Von whirled traveler - Veröffentlicht auf
Format: Gebundene Ausgabe Verifizierter Kauf
Glad to find an entertaining and timely book on the Philippines! If you're interested in the Philippines or basketball, then this is definitely a book for you. Well resarched and detailed study of hoops past and present in the basketball-crazed country of the Philippines, with some (very) extended play-by-play action following a pro team's season, (in the manner of Halberstam's Breaks of the Game). The added stories and asides of the author's life as an American expat in the Philippines is what really brings the story to life. Good book!
3 von 3 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
Highly Entertaining Account of Filipino Basketball and Culture 20. Juli 2013
Von Liebo - Veröffentlicht auf
Format: Taschenbuch
Having read and enjoyed Jim Yardley's Brave Dragons, which covered Chinese professional basketball, earlier this year I was eager to further explore the genre of "books about Asian basketball written in English," assuming such a thing was possible. Thankfully after some cursory research I learned about Rafe Bartholomew's Pacific Rims, which focuses on the Philippines' notable and somewhat-curious obsession with hoops. I finally got around to reading the book and believe that it is one of the best basketball books I have ever read. Bartholomew, currently a senior editor at Grantland, provides an incredibly entertaining look at the country's fascination with the sport with a book that is equal parts fly-on-the-wall season chronicle, deep examination of Filipino culture (athletic and otherwise), and travelogue, all of it worthwhile.

Unless Bartholomew is lying to the reader, Filipinos are remarkably into basketball and the sport has found its way into virtually every aspect of life in the country. Soccer never really caught on, and basketball is unquestionably the nation's most popular sport. Courts can be found even in the most remote areas and are viewed as centers of social life, the country's ubiquitous jeepneys are often adorned with a random assortment of NBA team logos or just Jerry West's silhouette, and players in the very popular Philippines' Basketball Association (and some Americans like Clyde Drexler, who is revered by Filipinos for some reason) are cultural icons that hawk a plethora of products to consumers.

The fact that basketball is so huge in the Philippines is enough to make for an interesting book. If Bartholomew just traveled across the country and noted the country's prevalence of courts and games, how random NBA games from the nineties serve as midday filler on television networks, and the strong following for the PBA (the second-oldest professional basketball league in the world) he could have made for a decent read. Bartholomew goes far deeper in Pacific Rims, however, much to the reader's benefit.

A good bit of the book covers the 2007 "conference" (season) of the Alaska Aces, a PBA franchise led by American coach Tim Cone. This gives Bartholomew an excellent opportunity to describe the nature of idiosyncrasies of the country's major professional league. As was the case in China, Filipino professional basketball leagues do things a little bit differently than the NBA. Teams are limited to one "import" on their roster, though some cutthroat coaches will often bring in multiple foreigners to compete for a roster spot or hire a new import in midseason. Imports must also meet a height restriction, which appears to change from year to year and is far from impervious from abuse or corruption. Franchises are all run by business owners, leading to some unfortunate names such as the Burger King Whoppers and Rain or Shine Elasto Painters (the Alaska Aces are naturally named the Alaska milk company). There are musings about referee corruption and some fans are imbued with elements of soccer hooliganism. Bartholomew's sections on the league's history and his analysis of its present iteration are truly captivating reflections on how the professional game has been appropriated across the world. The author manages to develop a close connection with many Aces, especially their import Rosell Ellis, and he is able to provide a very intimate account of what turns out to be a rather exciting campaign for the team. Bartholomew possesses a very deep understanding of the game (he is a decent player who was recruited to play as a ringer in an amateur tournament in the resort island of Boracay) and his game descriptions are vivid, suspenseful, and entertaining.

In addition to following the Aces, Bartholomew devotes many pages to describing general life in the Philippines. He spent three years in the country on a Fulbright grant and was able to explore much of the country and its culture over the period. His hoops focus is not limited to the professional ranks, and Bartholomew plays many pickup games with various cross-sections of Filipino society and travels across the country (the PBA is based entirely in the Manila metropolitan area) to see that the national obsession extends far beyond the PBA's borders. These sections read more like travel writing, as he describes driving and biking across precarious terrain in pursuit of some court in the remote mountains, game where midgets face off against drag queens, or similarly-intriguing basketball attraction, and they are just as strong as the more conventional Aces chapters. Bartholomew also occasionally detours into discussing racial and cultural aspects of Filipino society, such as his guest appearance on a rather racist Filipino telenovela and the complicated relationship between the Filipino-Americans in the PBA and their countrymen. I felt that these off-court sections enriched the book more than anything else and provided a fuller account of Filipino culture.

In Sum

I highly recommend Pacific Rims to anyone interested in basketball or just learning about a foreign sports culture in general. You certainly don't need to be able to recognize former PBA imports like Cedric Ceballos or Darvin Ham to appreciate the book. Bartholomew can repeat himself at times and sometimes injects too much of himself into the book, but he ultimately has crafted one of the best basketball books I have read. The book's scope extends off the court to the sport's cultural and social impact and he is equally strong in covering both. Pacific Rims is ultimately a very well-executed book on a fascinating subject that is a pleasure to read.

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