Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Book Review: From Peanuts to the Pressbox

(Note: While in college I was fortunate to have several internships, one of them taking place in the book publicity department for Thomas Nelson Publishers. For a book lover like myself who planned to enter the world of public relations and communications, it was a match made in heaven. Fast forward lo these many years later, and I've become a blogger reviewer for Thomas Nelson. From time to time I'll be posting reviews of books that they send me to read. Again, a match made in heaven.)

As an Alabama football fan, Eli Gold is for me synonymous with Tide football. It’s just not a game day without hearing his voice on the radio calling plays. Until I read his latest autobiography, From Peanuts to the Pressbox, however, I was unfamiliar with his radio broadcast adventures aside from college football Saturdays.

The book quickly remedied that with tales of Gold’s journey from a Brooklyn-born kid selling peanuts at Madison Square Garden to a leader in the sports broadcasting world. He serves up anecdotes from his long history in broadcasting, beginning with his first big break providing hockey play-by-play action for the Long Island Ducks. Gold has since gone on to more high profile gigs, including NASCAR, arena football, the NHL, the NFL, CBS and NBC Sports, and, most notably to this Bama fan, serving as the Voice of the Crimson Tide.

The book is filled with behind-the-scenes stories from arenas, racetracks and football fields around the country, many funny, some (such as the deaths of several NASCAR racers) sobering. Although the Bama fan in me would have preferred more stories about Alabama football, overall I enjoyed reading about Gold’s experiences inside and outside of the broadcasting booth.

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