Sum It Up: 1,098 Victories, a Couple of Irrelevant Losses, and a Life in Perspective, by Pat Summitt

4 Sep
FIVE of FIVE stars

FIVE of FIVE stars

I’ve never been a big fan of women’s basketball, or of team sports in general. I vaguely knew who Pat Summitt was, but not much else. I found this book by searching for Alzheimer’s memoirs, so the fact that I read it at all is just a fluke.

Only a small bit of this book is about Alzheimer’s, but I’m now searching schedules for women’s basketball, I have looked up and researched every player Summitt mentioned in her book, I am all set to hate Virginia with a passion, I’m now a big fan of Pat Summitt, and I just might even go buy a basketball.

I’m 48 years old for gosh sake.

This book covers SO MUCH. Pat Summitt was literally raised in a log cabin, and went on to start women’s basketball, shape & form the sport, head to the Olympics, raise it up to the caliber it is today, and has raised and developed several female role models. She was there from the beginning, so this book covers Title IX, the very beginnings of college basketball for females and the battles it took to get anyone to take it seriously.

It is also SO well written. I know she has a co-author (Sally Jenkins), but it certainly sounds like her voice, and regardless it’s a fascinating read that had me glued from page one. It’s also quietly and intermittently heartbreaking as tiny breaks are taken throughout the book to talk about her disease.

Having Alzheimer’s does not sum up Pat Summitt’s life, and she does not let it sum up her memoir. She lived a tremendous life before her diagnosis, and she will continue to, but she will not let the diagnosis define her or take away from her accomplishments. Whether you love her or hate her as a coach, she is a women to look up to. FIVE STARS and I would recommend this book to anyone, you don’t have to care about basketball to love the book – but you might find yourself newly engulfed in her passion for the sport. I certainly am.

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