In These Girls, Hope Is a Muscle
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Originally published in 1995 to huge critical acclaim and a finalist for the NBCC Award for Nonfiction, Madeleine Blais's In These Girls, Hope Is a Muscle is a modern sports writing classic. Now expanded and updated with a new epilogue, Blais's book tells the story of a season in the life of the Amherst Lady Hurricanes, a powerhouse girls' high school basketball team from a small western Massachusetts college town. The Hurricanes were a talented team with a near-perfect record, but for five straight years, when it came to the crunch of the playoffs, they somehow lacked the scrappy, hard-driving desire to go all the way. Now, led by senior guards Jen Pariseau, a three-point specialist, and Jamila Wideman, an All-American phenom, this was the year to prove themselves. It was a season to test their passion for the sport and their loyalty to each other, and a chance to discover who they really were. As an off-season of summer jobs and basketball camps turns to fall, as students arrive and the games begin, Blais charts the ups and downs of the team and paints a portrait of the wider Amherst community, which comes to revel in the athletic exploits of their girls. Finally, a women's team was getting the attention they deserve. And the Hurricanes were richly deserving; these teenage girls are fierce and funny, smart and ambitious, and they are the heart of this gripping book. In These Girls, Hope Is a Muscle is a classic sports book, a timeless look at girls' athletics.
Grove Press, 9780802121455, 272pp.
Publication Date: July 11, 2017
About the Author
Madeleine Blais was a reporter for the Miami Herald for years before joining the faculty of the School of Journalism at the University of Massachusetts. She is the author of In These Girls, Hope is a Muscle, Uphill Walkers, and The Heart Is an Instrument, a collection of her journalism. Madeleine Blais lives in Amherst, Massachusetts.