The History of Swimming: A Memoir

The History of Swimming: A Memoir

by Kim Powers


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They entered the world just five minutes apart, twins swimming out of the womb together, already arguing about who got to lead the way. They grew up together, best friends with rhyming names. They even went to the same college — where one of them had a nervous breakdown, and the other didn't. Grown-up, one of them became a suicidal drunk, the other a success. Now, one is missing, and the other has just three days to find him. It really happened. The History of Swimming details Kim Powers' frantic search for his twin brother Tim who disappears from Manhattan one weekend while in his late 20s. Kim almost mystically imagines that the clues to Tim's whereabouts have been planted in a series of letters written by Tim over the years. Now, Kim uses the letters as a sort of roadmap that takes him to Texas, the setting of their greatest triumphs and tragedies. At the small Texas college where many of these events occurred, Kim falls in with two eccentric traveling companions who guide him on the last leg of his quest, driving through the night to the one final place where Tim might be.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780786719372
Publisher: Da Capo Press
Publication date: 08/28/2007
Edition description: Reprint
Pages: 288
Product dimensions: 5.60(w) x 8.70(h) x 0.80(d)

About the Author

Kim Powers is an Emmy and Peabody-winning writer who's worked at both ABC's Good Morning America and Primetime with Diane Sawyer. An MFA graduate of the Yale School of Drama, he wrote the screenplay for the festival-favorite indie film Finding North, which plays frequently on the Sundance Channel. He was also a staff writer for the AMC dramatic series The Lot. Prior to writing, he was a development executive for various film and TV companies in New York and was a producer for PBS's Great Performances. A native Texan, he currently lives in New York City and Asbury Park, New Jersey.

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History of Swimming 4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 3 reviews.
presto on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
A mémoire.Kim and Tim Powers are twins, best friends and like their older brother, gay. But when the younger Tim has a breakdown while at college things change between the two boys, and they begin to hate with almost the same intensity that they still love each other, their differences pushing them apart as Tim becomes a suicidal drunk and Kim settles into a stable relationship with his partner.But when they are in their late twenties, a few weeks after a botched suicide attempt, Tim goes missing Kim is distruaght. Worried for Tim's life Kim spends a weekend searching for his lost twin, the only clues he has to Tim's possible whereabouts a succession of eloquent letters Tim had written him over the years. In the belief that Tim has gone back to where his troubles started Kim in his search leaves Manhattan and flies to Texas and their old college, Austin. There Kim meets a lonely twenty year student old who appoints himself as Kim's aid in the search for Tim.As Kim narrates the series of events of that fearful weekend he steadily fills in all the details of their upbringing from his earliest memories: their mother's early death, the nervous breakdowns, their coming out as gay, the rape of a best friend, the rift that broke them apart as much as drew them together.Kim Powers write with an eye for detail and with an openness and frankness in this personal account of his and Tim's life. It is at times painful, and Kim does not spare himself in the telling of his story. The conclusion is unexpected, sad and moving, yet Kim manages to find something positive from it all.I found this a fascinating account, although despite that there were a few passages where the author failed to keep me riveted and I found my mind wandering, especially in the early parts of the book. I felt too that the account bypassed many of the individuals in their lives; with the exception of Stan, the young student who helps Kim, most are sidelined. For example, of Jess, Kim's partner of many years, there is only the occasionally mention, and we learn little or nothing about him or their relationship. But it is nonetheless an enlightening true life account.
montano on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Kim Powers makes the reader feel what its like to be a twin, intimately connected to a person by accident of birth and raising but separate enough to be unable to save the other half of yourself. Powers recounts his life with family in flashbacks, as the hours tick by in his desperate search for his missing twin whom he fears is dead or dying. An unforgettable tale of sibling love.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I was captivated by the lives of Tim and Kim Powers. They went through some very tough times together. I felt so sad that they had such personal issues as adults and blamed each other much of the time. Kim Powers has told an amazing story, not the lives of typical twins.