An Accidental Sportswriter by Robert Lipsyte

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Celebrated sports journalist Robert Lipsyte—the New York Times’ longtime lead sports columnist—mines pure gold from his long and very eventful career to bring readers a memoir like no other. An enthralling book, as much about personal relationships and the culture of sports as the athletes and teams themselves, An Accidental Sportswriter interweaves stories from Lipsyte’s life and the events he covered to explore the connections between the games we play and the lives we lead. Robert Lipsyte has been there—from the Mets’ first Spring Training to the fight that made Muhammad Ali an international icon to the current steroids scandals that rewired our view of sports—and in An Accidental Sportswriter he offers a fresh and refreshing view of the world of professional athletes as seen through the eyes of a journalist who always managed to remain independent of our jock-obsessed culture.

About Robert Lipsyte

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Robert Lipsyte was an award-winning sportswriter for the New York Times and the Emmy-winning host of the nightly public affairs show The Eleventh Hour. He is the author of twelve acclaimed novels for young adults and is the recipient of the Margaret A. Edwards Award honoring his lifetime contribution in that genre. He has also written numerous works of fiction and nonfiction for adults. He lives in Manhattan and on Shelter Island, New York, with his wife, Lois Morris, and his dog, Milo. Visit his website at
Published May 3, 2011 by HarperCollins e-books. 261 pages
Genres: Biographies & Memoirs. Non-fiction

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Kirkus Reviews

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TV contributor, biographer, veteran sportswriter and young adult novelist Lipsyte (Center Field, 2010, etc.) revisits key events in his life, the sporting world, the lives of professional athletes and the evolving cultural significance of sports in America.

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The New York Times

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Lipsyte writes, “Being with Greg in those tumultuous years of 1963 and 1964 informed the rest of my career.” That career — not only as a New York Times sportswriter, but as a freelancer, a successful young adult novelist and a television interviewer — has been filled with marquee names like Micke...

Jun 24 2011 | Read Full Review of An Accidental Sportswriter

Publishers Weekly

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After college, the need for a summer job landed the unathletic, aspiring writer with little interest in sports on the Times sports desk, a job that allowed him to shadow Gay Talese and later cover the emergence of Muhammad Ali, a story that became his "magic carpet ride."

Mar 07 2011 | Read Full Review of An Accidental Sportswriter

Book Reporter

Lipsyte's full-time sportswriting gig began with an uncomfortable attempt at an interview with an uncooperative Mickey Mantle in 1960 on his way to working with some of the biggest names in the sports and entertainment industries, including Howard Cosell, Muhammad Ali, Billie Jean King, Lance Arm...

Jun 14 2011 | Read Full Review of An Accidental Sportswriter

The Nation

Then came a stroke of luck: the Times’s regular boxing writer wanted to cover a horse race rather than travel to Miami to see a blowhard young boxer named Cassius Clay get his behind handed to him by the fearsome champion Sonny Liston.

Jun 27 2011 | Read Full Review of An Accidental Sportswriter

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