Bicyclist Lance Armstrong is viewed a modern-day superhero. He survived testicular cancer and returned to win the Tour de France five times. But, as Jack Kerouac once quipped, "Walking on water wasn't built in a day." In Armstrong's case, his race to triumph requires an almost pathological fervent commitment and a large supportive cast that, according to author Daniel Coyle, includes "Belgian tough-guys, controversial Italian sports doctors, New Age healers, attack-dog lawyer, obsessed fans, and jittery corporations; not to mention his girlfriend, the rock star Sheryl Crow." Lance Armstrong's War takes you inside the tumultuous 2004 cycling season and inside the head of a world-class athlete.
Lance Armstrong's War is a fascinating book about a complex guy who sees the world in a simple way. In the world of Team Armstrong, people are quickly divided into friends and foes -- the latter being "trolls" in Lance-speak. Every experience counts as a win or a loss. And the only time that matters is right now.
The Washington Post
When an athlete is as celebrated as Lance Armstrong, journalists tend to approach either with staggering awe or malicious schadenfreude. Refreshingly, Coyle (Hardball) displays neither. The journalist moved to Armstrong's training base in Spain to cover the months leading up to the cyclist's sixth Tour de France victory in 2004, and the resulting comfort level of Coyle with his subject is palpable. Armstrong emerges from these pages as neither the cancer-surviving saint his American fans admire, nor the soulless, imperialist machine his European detractors hate. Instead, he comes across as a preternaturally gifted athlete barely removed from the death-defying hellion he was as a teenager, fanatically disciplined, gregarious and generous but with a legendarily icy temper. Coyle sweeps over the basics of Armstrong's Texas childhood and fight with cancer, concentrating on his obsessive training-this is a sport where results are measured in ounces and microseconds. He's sometimes too loose with his writing, digressing as though he had all the time in the world, but he tightens up for the grand finale: the Tour. This work is honest, personal and passionate, with plenty to chew on for fans and novices alike. Agent, David Black. (June 14) Copyright 2005 Reed Business Information.