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Trophy Son: A Novel
by Douglas Brunt

Published: 2017-05-30
Hardcover : 288 pages
3 members reading this now
5 clubs reading this now
1 member has read this book
Recommended to book clubs by 3 of 4 members

"Trophy Son brings Conroy's The Great Santini and Malamud's The Natural into the present day...A terrific book." -Harlan Coben

Private lessons. Professional coaches. Specialized camps for sports, math, music, and other fields. Today’s children are pushed to achieve excellence?or else. ...

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Introduction

"Trophy Son brings Conroy's The Great Santini and Malamud's The Natural into the present day...A terrific book." -Harlan Coben

Private lessons. Professional coaches. Specialized camps for sports, math, music, and other fields. Today’s children are pushed to achieve excellence?or else. But at what cost? New York Times bestselling author Douglas Brunt’s third novel, Trophy Son, tells the story of a tennis prodigy, from young childhood to the finals of the US Open, Wimbledon, and other tournaments around the world.

Growing up in the wealthy suburbs of Philadelphia, Anton Stratis is groomed to be one thing only: the #1 tennis player in the world. Trained relentlessly by his obsessive father, a former athlete who plans every minute of his son’s life, Anton both aspires to greatness and resents its all-consuming demands. Lonely and isolated?removed from school and socialization to focus on tennis?Anton explodes from nowhere onto the professional scene and soon becomes one of the top-ranked players in the world, with a coach, a trainer, and an entourage.

But as Anton struggles to find a balance between stardom and family, he begins to make compromises?first with himself, then with his health, and finally with the rules of tennis, a mix that will threaten to destroy everything he has worked for.

Trophy Son offers an inside look at the dangers of extraordinary pressure to achieve, whether in sports or any field, through the eyes of a young man defying his parents’ ambitions as he seeks a life of his own.

Editorial Review

No editorial review at this time.

Excerpt

CHAPTER

1


In the end, man shapes the world, but the world gets the first crack at us. We’re not much more than a puddle before we’re two years old, and then more years to develop so we can survive on our own. Until then we take in more impressions than we give. ... view entire excerpt...

Discussion Questions

The novel discusses the importance of allowing a child to be bored. Having read the book, what do you think?

Many children who grow up in urban environments know about suburban backyards only from pictures in children's books. What is the role of literature in Anton's life?

Does our society place too much emphasis on athletics? On celebrity?

Lance Armstrong claims athletes are able to take performance enhancing drugs, avoiding detection, and that to do so merely levels the playing field because everyone is doing it anyway. If true, what are possible solutions for professional sports organizations to address the problem performance enhancing drugs?

Suggested by Members

Who was your favorite and least favorite character?
Will the marriage last?
Is it necessary to take performance drugs to compete professionally?
by smozer (see profile) 10/12/17

Notes From the Author to the Bookclub

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Book Club Recommendations

Member Reviews

Overall rating:
 
 
  "Trophy Son"by smozer (see profile) 10/12/17

This book lead to a lively discussion of professional athletics, drug use in competitive sports, and obsessive parenting.

 
  "Trophy Son"by simlly14 (see profile) 10/12/17

Very interesting and informative story about athletics at the top professional level. Several in my bookclub did not love this book as much as I did, but did participate in an interesting discussion.

 
by db2ski (see profile) 09/07/17

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