From age eight, when she discovered she loved skating, to age 19, when she won her Olympic gold medal, Hamill's parents sacrificed and scraped so she could train. This memoir is her homage to them, as well as her frank recounting of the difficulties women faced in professional sports in the 1970s. Hamill's father worked to support the family, so her mother, Carol, would drive her to most practices and competitions, battling "the sport's old boys' network" on her daughter's behalf. After the Olympics, it was up to Hamill to figure out what to do. She was young and unschooled in life off the rink, with no female role models for the professional career she wanted. She struggled to pay back her parents, find a man who'd love her, and keep skating beautifully, but she couldn't do it all. She ended up suffering two difficult divorces and a custody battle, alienating her parents and going bankrupt trying to make the Ice Capades successful. Frequent mentions of Carol's mental problems distract from Hamill's story, but that won't dissuade the skater's fans from devouring this quietly charming book. (Oct.)Copyright 2007 Reed Business Information
Skating Lifeby Dorothy As Hamill
The dazzling smile, the signature haircut, the staple spin. "America's Sweetheart" Dorothy Hamill grew up on the ice, working toward the dream she was to accomplish by age nineteen: winning Olympic gold in figure skating. But life was not the picture of perfection it appeared to be. Dorothy faced a painful inner struggle from the time she was a young girl that followed her into adulthoodthough she would not know about the depression that ran in her family until much later in life. Weeks and months away from home to train and compete took a difficult toll, yet little reprieve could be found in the tumultuous and fragile relationship she had with her parents.
Dorothy went on to marry the man of her dreams, only to have the partnership end in heartache and a tragedy that almost pushed her to her breaking point. Then, just when a light at the end of the tunnel finally began to appear, a second failed marriage tried and tested Dorothy's trust and strength yet againa travesty that could have led her to give up. But, she found a remarkable strength in what she did haveher greatest love, her daughter Alexandra.
"Thank goodness, I had my skating. There was certainly a pattern to my life. When times were tough, I went skating. It was only while I was out on the ice, enjoying the freedom of movement and my love of music, that I was able to escape from my bottomless heartache."
In her deeply moving and honest memoir, Dorothy opens up for the first time about love, family, courage, and what it means to truly win both on and off the ice.
Meet the Author
Dorothy Hamill was a three-time United States National Champion in figure skating from 1974 to 1976, and won the World Championship and Olympic Gold Medal in 1974. She was an inductee of the U.S., Olympic, and World Figure Skating Hall of Fame, and headlined the Ice Capades for seven years before briefly owning it. She resides in Baltimore with her daughter, Alexandra, and continues to perform in skating exhibitions today.
Co-author Deborah Amelon is an award-winning writer and producer in the television and film industry. Her credits include movies of the week, theatrical features, and series. She lives in Los Angeles with her husband, Robert Huddy, and sons, Addison and Walker.
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After the closing of the 2010 Winter Olympics it was so wonderful to sit down and read this great book. I have always enjoyed watching figure skating and when I saw this book, I knew I had to read it. I was not disappointed. It is an easy read with insight into Dorothy's life as we see her go from a little girl, trying to get in as much ice time as she can, to the strong and vibrant woman she is today. Sharing with us the difficulties that she and her family encountered along the way helps the reader to see what is possible with perserverance and an eye on the goal. Her experiences and the people whom she met along the way takes the reader back onto the ice and the great memories there. A good read for those of us who enjoy biographies! And a nice look back at the wonderful sport of figure skating. Thanks Dorothy for taking us around the rink with you again!
I enjoyed reading the book and it was easy to read. It was interesting to learn some of the facts presented in the book about her and I found it interesting that she has also had the challenges that we that are not in the public spotlight have experienced. I would buy it again without a thought.
This book was a surprise...I didn't anticipate liking it, but I really did! Dorothy Hamill comes across as real and very human. She is open about her family and her marriages, her great successes and her failures. One learns of all the hard work and sacrifices her entire family made. I found myself rooting for her...especially when one had the feeling someone was going to take advantage of her. I enjoyed going back in time to the sixties and seventies. She has led an interesting life and is an admirable person. The book was easy to read and had interesting pictures. I would recommend this book to anyone, not just skaters.