- Taschenbuch: 344 Seiten
- Verlag: Broadway Books; Auflage: 1 (20. April 2010)
- Sprache: Englisch
- ISBN-10: 030739395X
- ISBN-13: 978-0307393951
- Größe und/oder Gewicht: 13,2 x 1,8 x 20,3 cm
- Durchschnittliche Kundenbewertung: Schreiben Sie die erste Bewertung
- Amazon Bestseller-Rang: Nr. 411.188 in Fremdsprachige Bücher (Siehe Top 100 in Fremdsprachige Bücher)
A Terrible Splendor: Three Extraordinary Men, a World Poised for War, and the Greatest Tennis Match Ever Played (Englisch) Taschenbuch – 20. April 2010
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“Rich and rewarding…makes a strong claim to greatest-ever status for Budge vs. Cramm in the Davis Cup…Fisher brings a sharp eye for details. He vividly sketches the anything-goes atmosphere of Weimar Berlin [and] turns up details that tennis fans will savor.”
—Wall Street Journal
“Tennis has seen plenty of great matches…but none with the extra-athletic significance of the Budge-Cramm affair…as the match enters its final set, all the narrative pieces lock together and A Terrible Splendor becomes as engrossing as the contest it portrays...Cramm’s life is a movie development deal waiting to happen.”
“Richly detailed…the story moves from one nail-biting set to the next against a backdrop of improbably high personal and political stakes.”
“Vivid…The compelling nature of the match, in tennis terms alone, would be enough to make this a gripping read…But tennis is almost the least interesting element of Fisher’s account. For the historic match between the two players took place in London, with the world poised for brutal war and the players bringing all manger of psychological baggage on court with them….[Fisher] shows how sport can stand both outside the ‘real world,’ and yet remain subject to its dark whims.”
“Exciting…a thoroughly riveting account of an intense human endeavor…the astonishing, inspiring story of a sports hero who was not merely a heroic tennis player, but a genuinely heroic man.”
—The Commercial Dispatch
"Marshall Jon Fisher has masterfully woven the story of Europe on the edge of war, a man pursued by the Gestapo, and America on the rise into the tale of the greatest tennis match of the century. A Terrible Splendor is tense, tragic, beautifully told, and immensely enjoyable."
—Atul Gawande, National Book Award Finalist and New York Times bestseller author of Complications and Better
"Forget Federer versus Nadal, and Borg versus McEnroe. Marshall Jon Fisher convincingly demonstrates that the greatest tennis match of all time was Gottried Von Cramm versus Don Budge in the 1937 Davis Cup semifinals. This is one of the best sports books you will ever read. But it's more than a sports book: as absorbing as the drama unfolding on Wimbledon's Centre Court is, it's surpassed by the drama of history swirling outside it. Fisher masterfully weaves biography, history, and sports--and sex and romance and the drums of war--into a thoroughly riveting narrative. Full of ironic twists and astonishing revelations, A Terrible Splendor is a literary triumph."
—Scott Stossel, Deputy Editor, Atlantic Monthly
“Marshall Jon Fisher has turned a tennis court masterpiece -- American Don Budge versus German Gottfried von Cramm to decide the 1937 Davis Cup -- into a literary masterpiece. Blending their lives with the darkening times, Fisher illuminates bygone cultures in the fascinating tale of a July afternoon in London.”
—Bud Collins, writer for the Boston Globe and commentator for ESPN and Tennis Channel
“There could be no more disparate characters in any sport than Bib Bill Tilden, Don Budge and Baron Gottfried von Cramm. Marshall Jon Fisher has done a marvelous job of weaving the threads of these three lives together at a time when the world was coming apart and at the moment when Budge and von Cramm were playing in the most important — if not the best — tennis match ever. This is sports history at its finest and most thorough.”
—Frank Deford, Senior Contributing Writer, Sports Illustrated, and Commentator on NPR’s “Morning Edition”
“Through the prism of one of the greatest tennis matches ever played, Marshall Jon Fisher throws open a window on the terrifying world of the thirties in Europe; illuminating in vivid detail the persecution of Baron Gottfried von Cramm; the pitiful kow-towing to Hitler by the tennis authorities and, rising above it all, the innate sportsmanship of the two friends and rivals, von Cramm and Donald Budge. Between every Budge backhand and von Cramm volley, history rears up in all its ‘terrible splendor.’”
—Richard Evans, Correspondent, The (London) Observor
“For those of us who believe that tennis is a metaphor for life, here at last in this marvelous narrative is proof, served up on the rackets of Budge and Von Cramm. A Terrible Splendor is a wonderful account of a time of great historical drama, with the world on the brink of war, and everything resting, or so it would seem, on getting the ball back over the net just one more time.”
—Abraham Verghese, author of The Tennis Partner and Cutting for Stone
"I’m grateful for my ignorance of tennis history, since if I’d known the outcome of the 1937 Davis Cup match before I read this engrossing book, I might not have sat on the edge of my seat and bitten my nails as Don Budge and Gottfried von Cramm served and volleyed. Marshall Jon Fisher captures two memorable characters, illuminates their historical and cultural milieus, and keeps us in delicious suspense."
—Anne Fadiman, author of the National Book Critics Circle Award-winning The Spirit Catches You and You Fall Down and the New York Times bestseller Ex Libris
From the Hardcover edition.
Über den Autor und weitere Mitwirkende
MARSHALL JON FISHER’s work has appeared in The Atlantic, Harper’s, and other magazines. His essay "Memoria ex Machina" was featured in Best American Essays 2003. He has written several books with his father, David E. Fisher, including Tube: The Invention of Television. Marshall lives in the Berkshires with his wife
From the Hardcover edition.
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I ran across this recently, and even contacted the author, since he made several references to my grandfather. One reference, in particular involved Frank Shields, actress Brooke Shields' grandfather, holding my grandfather Bitsy out of the 3rd story window of their London hotel by his ankle. I had heard this story directly from my grandpa late one night in 1986 when we shared a room together while I was in high school and he was suffering from terminal cancer. I thought it was a tall tale and that it happened either in Chicago or in Memphis at the Peabody Hotel, where Bitsy would take my father as a child to see the Ducks march up and down the elevators in the lobby. The author confirmed he possessed several distinct sources for the story and that it happened in London!
The book deals with the Davis Cup, the sexual orientation of a German national tennis legend, World War II, the Nazi's, the British, and all that surrounded that era. Bitsy was on the Davis Cup team at the time, and faired rather well, surprising the press in those days since they viewed his background as not up to par to compete, much less win.
It is a well-written story, and really does reflect a high level of scholarly research into all the players and circumstances written about in the story. There are also some choice photographs.
As for my grandfather, several books have been written, but are mostly a sort of "Atlanta History of Tennis" with a "player on each page" historical book. This is the only properly written, professional quality story that prominently features Bitsy Grant.
My hat is off to Mr. Fisher!
An account of memorable events, flawlessly presented.
In telling the lives of Baron Gottfried Von Cramm, German tennis player, Don Budge, an American player from head to toe, and Bill Tilden, one of the mightiest racquet-wielders ever, and building their stories around the 1937 Davis Cup match between Cramm and Budge, Fisher brings to vibrant life the years between the two world wars, and the very different places that each of these players came from and answered to. Fisher illustrates through strong and engaging writing the dramatic differences that country, age, and sexual orientation played for these three men, and brings home the magnitude of their achievements, on court but also in their lives.
Cramm was an aristocratic German with impeccable good looks, sportsmanship, and tennis playing. Opposed to the policies and practices of the Nazis, and gay, Cramm was safe from Nazi persecution only so long as he kept winning tennis matches for Germany. Budge was a middle-class American with phenomenal tennis skills, a love for Jazz and good times with the Hollywood cronies who befriended him, and solid support from the United States Tennis Association. Bill Tilden was the most famous tennis player of his time and into our own, as heralded for his amazing and enduring tennis-playing as for his off-court persona, infamous for his on-court antics, and highly irritating to the USTA for his bullheadedness as well as his ill-closeted gayness. Fisher gives us insight into all three, as well as solid introductions to many other figures of the times, including American tennis player Gene Mako, Queen Mary of England, English playwright Christopher Isherwood, German-Jewish tennis player Daniel Prenn, up and coming American Bobby Riggs, Hollywood types like Jack Benny and Charlie Chaplin, heiress Barbara Hutton, and Nazi terrors Goring, Himmler, and Hitler himself. That was the mix of the 1930s, a world indeed "poised for war." For some, World War II would bring persecution, deprivations, and personal tragedy, for others a new responsibility and realization of life's chaos, and for others, death.
The tennis match around which A Terrible Splendor is structured is told with perfect timing, building momentum and suspense then taking a break (neither disruptive nor jarring) to tell more of the background history, personal and political and social, and then taking us back into the match. The book drove me through emotional ranges of tears, anger, and excitement, and I could not put it down, as caught up as I was in the amazing lives of these three very distinct individuals, the times they lived in, and the match itself. Indeed, I was on the edge of my seat throughout this marvelous book and unsure until the end who won this incredible battle that went five sets, who survived the spiraling years into World War II, and who met the promise of a world beyond tennis and beyond war. I will never forget Cramm, Budge, or Tilden, or this great book, A Terrible Splendor.