How I Lost Everything and Won Back My Life
On Sale: July 1, 2007
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In 2004, James Blake's life was getting more perfect by
the day. A rising tennis star, with each passing year his
game seemed to improve. In 2002, he was named Sexiest Male
Athlete by People, and along the way he continued to gain in
the rankings and earn respect on the court. Each day seemed
to offer a new milestone, a new achievement; he was leading
a charmed life and loving every minute of the ride.
But that life came to an abrupt halt in May 2004 when Blake
broke his back in a freak accident on the court. A few
months later, as Blake was recovering from his injury, he
suffered another tremendous setback when his
father–the man who had raised him and provided the
inspiration for his tennis career–lost his battle with
stomach cancer. Shortly after his father's death, Blake's
situation was further complicated when he contracted Zoster,
a rare virus that paralyzed half of his face and threatened
to end his already jeopardized tennis career.
Breaking Back tells the story of the tumultous year that
followed these three devastating events, detailing how Blake
persevered through hardship to become one of the best tennis
players in the world. Here Blake explains how the wisdom and
words that his father imparted to him over the years gave
him the ability to succeed in the face of these seemingly
insurmountable odds. Though these trials proved the most
difficult of his life, ultimately this trifecta of tragedy
became the culmination of all his father's lessons, showing
Blake that even in death, his father was still teaching him
how to be a man.
In the spirit of Lance Armstrong's
It's Not About the Bike and Joan Didion's The Year of
Magical Thinking comes this remarkable tale of strength and
determination from one of tennis's biggest stars. A story of
passion, willpower, and the unbreakable bonds between a
father and a son, Breaking Back is one athlete's account of
finding hope in the bleakest of times.
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