Thursday, November 19, 2015
Concussion by Jeanne Marie Laskas (Book Review)
About the book-
Soon to be a major motion picture starring Will Smith, Concussion is the riveting, unlikely story of Dr. Bennet Omalu, the pathologist who made one of the most significant medical discoveries of the twenty-first century, a discovery that challenges the existence of America's favorite sport and puts Omalu in the crosshairs of football's most powerful corporation: the NFL.
In September of 2002, in a dingy morgue in downtown Pittsburgh, a young forensic neuropathologist named Bennet Omalu picked up a scalpel and made a discovery that would rattle America in ways he never intended. Omalu was new to America, chasing the dream, a deeply spiritual man escaping the wounds of civil war in Nigeria. The body on the slab in front of him belonged to a fifty-year-old named Mike Webster—aka “Iron Mike”—a Hall of Fame center for the Pittsburgh Steelers, one of the greatest to ever play the game. After retiring in 1990, Webster had suffered a dizzyingly steep decline. Toward the end of his life, he was living out of his van, Tasering himself to relieve his chronic pain, and fixing his rotting teeth with Super Glue. How did this happen? Omalu asked himself. How did a young man like Mike Webster end up like this? The search for answers would change Omalu's life forever and put him in the crosshairs of one of the most powerful corporations in America: the National Football League. What Omalu discovered in Mike Webster's brain—proof that his mental deterioration was no accident, but a disease, caused by relentless blows to the head, that could affect everyone playing the game—was the one truth the NFL would do anything to keep secret.
Taut, gripping, and gorgeously told, Concussion is the stirring true story of one unlikely man's courageous decision to stand up to a multibillion-dollar colossus bent on silencing him, and to tell the world the truth.
I saw a preview for the movie version of Concussion awhile back and I knew right away it would be a movie my husband and I would go and see together. I was even more excited when I found out that it was based on a book. I am not one of those people that has a problem seeing movies based on books. I think it expands the experience and sometimes offers a new perspective on the content.
Concussion was an interesting book from the get go. I found Bennet Omalu's whole story fascinating. I enjoyed that first half of the book that told us about his roots and growing up in Nigeria and about his family. It also laid out the reason he came to America and why he was put on the career path he was. I found that interesting without the aspect of him bringing forth the information about the damage repeated blows and concussions cause to football players, but his research on these brains of football players and the trouble he had trying to bring attention to it, make this book a page turner. Omalu is an intriguing character both in his daily life and in his career. I highly recommend this book to anyone who enjoys reading biographies of interesting people.
Concussion will be available on November 24. You can pre-order your copy today!
Concussion, the Major Motion Picture will be released on Christmas day. Enjoy the trailer below-