My Racing Heart
The Passionate World of Thoroughbreds and the Track
By Nan Mooney
(It Books, Paperback, 9780060958084, 320pp.)
Publication Date: April 2003
When Nan Mooney was seven years old, she sat in her grandmother May-May's living room to watch her first horse race ... And so began a turbulent romance between a woman and a sport.
Part memoir, part journey into the compelling world of Thoroughbred horse racing, My Racing Heart gallops headlong into the wild culture and fabulous creatures that rise up around a racetrack. Nan Mooney looks at the horses, jockeys, and trainers; the gambling and corruption; and racing's age-old history and forever offbeat society. From the dusty backstretch at a small-town track to the stands at magnificent Churchill Downs, Nan Mooney captures the risks and the glory, the excitement and the passion, for horse lovers, sports fans, and anyone who has ever craved a place to run wild.
Nan Mooney grew up in Seattle, half an hour north of Longacres racetrack, and graduated from Scripps College in California. Her work appears in The Blood-Horse, the journal of record for Thoroughbred horse racing. She lives in New York City. You can reach her at myracingheart.com.
“[Mooney] is an ambitious writer . . . . she manages to cash her share of winning tickets.”
-New York Times Book Review
“Mooney embraces the best parts of the horse world. It’s hard not to join her in this love affair.”
“We’re off on a lovely ride. By the time [Mooney’s] heading for home she’s got us cheering her on.”
“Vivid memoir . . . Mooney escorts us with an unscrupulous, generous eye through her romance with the track.”
“A wonderfully expressive love story. A dazzlingly successful blind date, deeply and unexpectedly satisfying, between readers and Thoroughbreds.”
“Deeply felt. Will prod the curious to investigate what it is about this sport that can inspire such love.”
“Mooney has sliced open her soul and let the horse run free. Her words are intoxicating. Her stories glow.”
-Daily Racing Form
“This is a confession and a love story, with all the fear and second-guessing that those bring.”
“An engaging introduction to the lure of the racetrack. [And] a confirmation of horseracing’s gritty glamour.”
“A love poem to racing. . . A fine book and a joy to read.”
“Exceptional writing. Extraordinary. The story she has to tell simply could not have been told more brilliantly.”
-Bill Littlefield, National Public Radio