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More Than Rivals: A Championship Game and a Friendship That Moved a Town Beyond Black and White
     

More Than Rivals: A Championship Game and a Friendship That Moved a Town Beyond Black and White

4.8 12
by Ken Abraham
 

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An Inspiring True Story Set in the Midst of the Civil Rights Era

By 1970, racial tension was at a breaking point in the southern town of Gallatin, Tennessee. Desegregation had emotions running high. The town was a powder keg ready to erupt. But it was also on the verge of something incredible.

Eddie Sherlin and Bill Ligon were boys growing up on opposite

Overview

An Inspiring True Story Set in the Midst of the Civil Rights Era

By 1970, racial tension was at a breaking point in the southern town of Gallatin, Tennessee. Desegregation had emotions running high. The town was a powder keg ready to erupt. But it was also on the verge of something incredible.

Eddie Sherlin and Bill Ligon were boys growing up on opposite sides of the tracks who shared a passion for basketball. They knew the barriers that divided them--some physical landmarks and some hidden in the heart--but those barriers melted away when the boys were on the court. After years of playing wherever they could find a hoop, Eddie and Bill entered the rigors of their respective high school teams. And at the end of the 1970 season, all-white Gallatin High and all-black Union High faced each other in a once-in-a-lifetime championship game. What happened that night would challenge Eddie and Bill--and transform their town.

This New York Times bestseller is a fast-paced true story of courage, determination, character, and forgiveness.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780800727222
Publisher:
Baker Publishing Group
Publication date:
06/07/2016
Pages:
320
Sales rank:
380,453
Product dimensions:
5.90(w) x 9.10(h) x 1.00(d)

Meet the Author

Ken Abraham is the New York Times bestselling author of many books, including Against All Odds with Chuck Norris and Let's Roll with Lisa Beamer. His work has been featured on 20/20, Dateline, Larry King Live, Good Morning America, CBS This Morning, The Today Show, and many more. At present, Ken has more than ten million books in print. Learn more at www.kenabrahambooks.com.

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More Than Rivals: A Championship Game and a Friendship That Moved a Town Beyond Black and White 4.8 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 12 reviews.
sh2rose More than 1 year ago
More Than Rivals: A Championship Game and a Friendship That Moved a Town Beyond Black and White by Ken Abraham My rating: 5 of 5 stars I am an avid basketball fan and this book had me from the first page! You don’t need to be one to see the amazing drive early in the lives of these two young men . The historical background of black meeting white in a time and place in the United States added a heavy yet ironic statement. The details the author included were crisp and key to fully grasp the dimensions of the contrasts and similarities of Eddie Sherlin and Bill Ligon, their families, their faith, and neighborhoods. This is a rare treat for me to read a non-fiction book. It fascinated and rewarded me. I had not known of their lives and feel richer now that I do. I grew up in the same era they did but lived in an area of the United States where the tensions between races were minimal and almost non-existent. Learning more about the reality of what others experienced was definitely worth reading this book. I received a copy of More Than Rivals: A Championship Game and a Friendship that Moved a Town Beyond Black and White from Net Galley in exchange for my honest review which I have given.
mymissdaisy More than 1 year ago
And I thought . . . I can't say much more than the qualified people who have already endorsed this book. Borrowing from a few . . . 'monster slam dunk' , 'riveting', 'outstanding', 'you'll laugh and cry'. I can add one word 'timely'. Everyone needs to read this 5 star book. I received a complimentary copy of More Than Rivals from Baker Publishing in exchange for my honest review. This review will be posted at: My Journey Back
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Absolutely the best book that I have ever read. With so much hate in the world, this book illustrates how much good there is in people
amybooksy More than 1 year ago
More Than Rivals is a touching inspiring story. I found this book to be quite moving and believe everyone would get a huge lesson out of it. 5 plus stars.
VicG More than 1 year ago
Ken Abraham in his new book, “More Than Rivals” published by Revell gives us A Championship Game and a Friendship That Moved a Town Beyond Black and White. From the back cover: In 1970, one small southern town was a powder keg ready to erupt. But it was also on the verge of something incredible. Eddie Sherlin and Bill Ligon grew up on opposite sides of the tracks in Gallatin, Tennessee. They knew the barriers that divided them–some physical landmarks and some hidden in the heart–but those barriers melted away when the boys were on the basketball court. After years of playing wherever they could find a hoop, Eddie and Bill rose as leaders of their respective high school teams. And at the end of the 1970 season, all-white Gallatin High and all-black Union High faced each other in a once-in-a-lifetime championship game. What happened that night would challenge Eddie and Bill–and transform their town. Ken Abraham knows how to tell History so that is it accurate and informing. Mr. Abraham also knows how to tell a story so that it is interesting as well. There is a lot of conflict in this town. Gallatin is highly segregated but Eddie and Bill don’t see their color when they are playing Basketball. And then it all comes down to the night of the championship game. There is a lot going on in this story. Mr. Abraham writes an interesting story that moves along at a remarkably brisk pace. Mr. Abraham has given us real life characters in Eddie and Bill to work with as he tells the story of friendship, prejudice and transformation. I highly recommend this book. Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from Revell. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”
Sydney More than 1 year ago
This is the perfect time for this book. It’s not just about basketball, or two boys growing up in a small town in Tennessee in the 1960s, or a championship basketball game in 1970 between two schools – one mostly white and one black – that are being forced to integrate while closing down the black school. This is about people’s fears and prejudices, and how that affects everyone… and it’s about paying little attention to those things when deciding who to be friends with, who to speak to, and who is just the same as you are. I would not have picked this book if it was only about basketball. I’m not that interested in the game, and would have more interest in a different story. But the fact this is more to do about racial tensions, desegregation in the South, and actual people (this is a true story, too!), and in light of all the things I see fly across my Facebook page the past few years, I was really curious about the story. I wasn’t disappointed in the least. Whether you are a huge basketball fan, or you just know the ball is orange and you were taken to see the Harlem Globetrotters when you were a kid (like I was!), you will not want to put this book down. It’s not preachy on any aspect whatsoever. It doesn’t lay blame. It tells the story of two young boys who strike up a friendship, and what happens when they meet again on the basketball court years later. And it might make you look at things today in a different light. **I was sent this copy from Revell Books in exchange for my fair and honest opinion.**
Britney_Adams More than 1 year ago
More Than Rivals is a poignant story! Ken Abraham brings the time period to life as he shares the story of an unlikely pairing and a championship game that transformed a Tennessee community. I was immediately drawn into the lives of Eddie Sherlin and Bill Ligon, and I enjoyed their amazing journey. Based on a true story, More Than Rivals is an informative glimpse of history, as well as a touching tale of friendship! I received a complimentary copy of this book in exchange for an unbiased review. All thoughts expressed are my own.
JViola79 More than 1 year ago
More Than Rivals by Ken Abraham is more than a book about basketball. It is the true story of the success and greatness two boys can achieve through a deep love for each other that grows out of a love for the game. Eddie Sherlin and Bill Ligion grew up in Gallatin, Tennessee, literally, on different sides of the track, when more than the train tracks separated them. These two boys let barriers of race and family melt away as their friendship deepened whenever they could find a hoop to shoot baskets. I found the book to be inspiring as I was drawn back to the 1960’s and 70’s when segregation ran high in the hearts of towns and peoples. Ken Abraham does a wonderful job at telling their story while weaving in the political events taking place at that time. The characters are brought to life as they face and overcome the battles of race to develop a strong friendship. The author brings to life the struggles of each family, both Christian, to overcome the differences they know to be wrong yet challenging society at that time. He does a wonderful job bringing to life the parenting issues each mother faced. Each encouraged their sons to do the right and honorable despite what might come of it. In so doing, they raised boys able to look beyond skin color to change the course of a town. I enjoyed this book, finding it hard to put down, as the characters were made real to me. I was drawn to learn more deeply of the events which transpired while I was still young and unaware. This story brought perspective from both sides of the track brilliantly. This is a book sure to be enjoyed by adults, high schoolers, basketball fans or not. The story is told in a moving and engaging style. I found myself deeply respecting Bill Ligion for not only extending the hand of friendship to Eddie Sherlin but also remaining positive in the face of obstacles, never allowing himself to be smothered by hatred or in holding a grudge. There truly are many lessons to be learned from this book; the most powerful one being: Darkness must flee wherever the true light shines. (page 305) *** I received a copy of this book from Revell for review purposes. The opinions expressed in this review are my own.
AngelN1 More than 1 year ago
More Than Rivals by Ken Abraham is the story of two boys, Eddie Sherlin and Bob Ligon, who played basketball secretly together in a segregated Tennessee town in the 1960s. This story is a good one, particularly when describing how the two races were separated within one small town. I grew up in a small Indiana town that had integrated before my mom went to elementary school, so the racially charged atmosphere in Gallatin, Tennessee was far from my own experiences. I felt that the author did a good job of letting the reader get to know Eddie's character, and Bob's mom Anna, very well, but I did feel that Bob himself was not as fully portrayed as he could have been. The story starts when the boys are eleven years old and culminates at the big game of their senior year in high school. Both boys' Christian faith and the faith of many others in the town is woven into the story. The final game is told very well, with plenty of tension, and I am happy that I didn't know the outcome before reading. I would have loved to know more about what happened to both Eddie and Bob afterwards. I received this book from the publisher, Revell, for the purpose of writing a review, but all opinions are my own.
HeartofaBookWorm More than 1 year ago
What an inspiring story! Two young boys find friendship despite tensions in their home town of Gallatin, Tennessee. Eddie and Bill never saw "black or white," they just played a game they both loved to play and neither allowed the negativity win out. The friendship continued throughout the years and no matter what, they always did what was right! They did not succumb to the hatred and in turn they showed their town how seeing each other as equals and having faith can bring about healing for so many! I was totally cheering these two on and I would highly recommend this book!! It is a 5 ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥'s FOR SURE!!!! Thank you Baker Publishing for allowing me this complimentary book in exchange for my honest opinion!
NatalieRae More than 1 year ago
This story drew me into American history unlike any other sports story has before. In typical Mayberry fashion, the town of Gallatin, Tennessee is a small, quiet southern town divided by a single set of railway tracks. And an invisible barrier that segregated black from white. Until a single basketball game challenged it all. I'm the first to admit that basketball is not my game. Don't like watching it much less having to read about it but I was immediately transfixed by the stories of two little boys who just wanted to play ball. Enough they momentarily forget it's the 1960's and one is black and the other is white. Mr. Abraham delivers a refreshing story of how two boys growing up on the opposite of the tracks pursue their dreams on the court in spite of the political tension boiling as hot as the Tennessee sun on a summer's day threatens to erupt in their hometown. After years of separation and segregation the pressure mounts as the all-white Gallatin High faces the all-black Union in the championship game bringing the two boys back together. I found myself ripping though the pages as fast as I could in anticipation of the big game and its outcome as if I, myself, was a resident of Gallatin. The stakes were just that high. Eddie Sherlin and Bill Ligon offer a lesson in perseverance, courage, and hope that resonate even today. This is a fabulous story of two little boys who looked past color and remind us that we are all created equal in Christ and should love one another justly. "Darkness must flee wherever the true light shines." *I received a copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for my honest review.
StacyA64 More than 1 year ago
More than Rivals by Ken Abraham tells the story of two young boys growing up in Gallatin, Tennessee during the turbulent and racially charged 1960s. Eddie Sherlin was white, Bill Ligon was black. Both boys came from poor families. Both loved the game of basketball. Ken Abraham weaves an instantly gripping and readable tale about the boys, their town and the times they lived in. Even the abundance of basketball was not off-putting to someone who is not interested in the sport. Abraham has a way with words that leaves the reader knowing just what it was like to be Eddie Sherlin walking down the halls of Gallatin High or Bill Ligon holding court at the Oakes Drive-In. Eddie and Bill meet by chance when Eddie, who is obsessed with basketball at the young age of 11, hears the familiar sound of a basketball bouncing off a backboard and goes to check it out. The problem is that he had been cutting through the "colored" neighborhood. He finds Bill Ligon and some of his friends playing. Eddie watches and when one of the boys has to leave, Eddie asks to play. This is unheard of in Gallatin in the 1960s. Gallatin is the kind of town where whites and blacks walk on opposite sides of the street, don't shop in the same stores, go to the same schools, or drink from the same water fountain. The friendship Eddie and Bill form continues and remains a secret until Bill's family moves to another house on the other side of town. They don't see each other, but as they grow and become standout athletes in their respective schools, they are aware of each other and follow each other's basketball careers. Then in 1970, when both boys are seniors in high school, and integration is looming over Gallatin despite fear and opposition from the locals, an amazing, once-in-a-lifetime event takes place. Both of Gallatin's high school basketball teams are in the final for the district championship. That's right, the white school and the black school are playing each other for the title! In tiny Gallatin, tension is high and bad blood is welling up everywhere. What happens at that championship game is the stuff of legend and that's exactly what it's become. I can't recommend this book enough. As a true story it is a rare jewel and an inspiration. In our own troubled times it gives rise to a lingering hope for humanity.