The Blind Side: Evolution of a Game

The Blind Side: Evolution of a Game

by Michael Lewis


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"Lewis has such a gift for storytelling... he writes as lucidly for sports fans as for those who read him for other reasons."—Janet Maslin, New York Times

When we first meet Michael Oher is one of thirteen children by a mother addicted to crack; he does not know his real name, his father, his birthday, or how to read or write. He takes up football, and school, after a rich, white, Evangelical family plucks him from the streets. Then two great forces alter Oher: the family's love and the evolution of professional football itself into a game in which the quarterback must be protected at any cost. Our protagonist becomes the priceless package of size, speed, and agility necessary to guard the quarterback's greatest vulnerability: his blind side.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780393330472
Publisher: Norton, W. W. & Company, Inc.
Publication date: 09/04/2007
Edition description: Reprint
Pages: 320
Sales rank: 45,817
Product dimensions: 5.50(w) x 8.10(h) x 1.20(d)
Lexile: 980L (what's this?)
Age Range: 14 - 18 Years

About the Author

Michael Lewis is the best-selling author of Liar’s Poker, Moneyball, The Blind Side, The Big Short, and The Undoing Project. He lives in Berkeley, California, with his wife and three children.

Date of Birth:

October 15, 1960

Place of Birth:

New Orleans, LA


Princeton University, B.A. in Art History, 1982; London School of Economics, 1985

Table of Contents

Back Story     15
The Market for Football Players     29
Crossing the Line     45
The Blank Slate     75
Death of a Lineman     103
Inventing Michael     131
The Pasta Coach     167
Character Courses     197
Birth of a Star     231
The Egg Bowl     263
Freak of Nurture     293
And Moses Stuttered     313
Afterword to the Paperback Edition     331
Author's Note     335

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The Blind Side: Evolution of a Game 4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 811 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Living in the third poorest zip code in the United States, very few people get out to lead better lives. In the thought-provoking book The Blind Side, a fifteen year old boy named Michael Oher acquires the chance to leave because of his athletic ability. At age fifteen and already six foot five and 330 pounds, Michael has the build of a prototypical NFL offensive lineman. In a once in a million chance a rich white family adopts him and helps him reach his new goal of becoming a sports superstar. Throughout the book, Michael Lewis shifts from point to point, telling the reader about Michael but then explaining the offensive lineman¿s job in minute detail. You learn that Oher¿s mother is on crack, his dad is dead, and he¿s escaped from several foster homes as a child. I simply shook my head in wonder reading this book about how many good and bad things can happen simultaneously. I definitely suggest reading this book, as it is both touching and tells an avid sports fan much more in depth about the game of football than they ever thought. Sean period 4-6
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
The Blind Side was enjoyable because of it powerful message about overcoming and putting others first. Through out the whole book the Tuogh family goes out of there way to help a young boy that they do not even know. Reading the book made me want to go out in my community and do something to help. Reading about how loving the family was, showed me the proper way for a christain family to act. I love hearing storys of people doing what ever they can to make a diffeance in some ones life that they dont even know, The Blind Side is a the perfect example of this.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Very good. i really don't like to read books, but i understod this one. mostly impart because it was about football, something i really like to play. it inspires you not to give up in life, or anything for that matter.
Guest More than 1 year ago
The Blind Side is a wonderfully written book about a famous, highly paid, football player, Michael Oher. Michael was not the average kid. He has thirteen brothers and sisters, his mom is addicted to crack, he doesn't know his father, he had never touched a football, and he doesn't know the basics to a good education such as reading and writing. He didn't have a stable home and didn't attend school on a regular basis. Then, his life took a turn for the better. He, some how, got into Briarcrest Christian School and was adopted by a wealthy white family. He and his new family worked hard to obtain an acceptable grade point average for the NCAA so he could play college football. Michael Oher faced and overcame many challenges. His life is mysterious, sad, and inspiring. He was able to make something of himself, with the help of others, and reached the ¿American Dream¿.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I enjoyed this story and wished for more about Michael Oher and the Thouy family. I was completely bored with the pages and pages of football plays and football history. I am not that big a fan. I found myself skimming those pages to move on to the actual story.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I had seen the movie, which prompted me to read the book. The book does focus on the relationship between Michael Oher and the Touhy family, but to a lesser degree than the movie. The book focuses equally on Oher's relationship with the Touhys and the evolution of the game of professional football. Although I'm not a football fan, I received an education on how professional football has changed over the last 40 years. I was hoping for more detail regarding the interpersonal relationship aspects of the story, and instead found out more about football than I ever wanted to know. If you're a football fan you'll love the book. If you're looking for a more in-depth look at the relationships of the people involved you'll be dissapointed.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
As well as you know, the book is always better than the movie. The Blind Side is a work of excellent entertainment. The story of Michael Oher is a story of classic rags to riches, but the Tuohy family changing his and their lives the moment they picked Michael up that cold night. The point of his education played such a integral part in his life that again the Tuohy family had a part in. The Blind Side is such a good feel good story. You don't have to be a sports fan, you don't have to be any kind of a fan to enjoy this story. great reading!!!!!!!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
What an amazing story. I read this book not knowing they were making it into a movie and I'm so glad I did. I only hope the movie can do the book justice. At times, the book can get very football intense which I was not expecting, but if you can hang in there it's worth it.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I thought this book was great! I learned about college recruiting,football,and gaining sucess through unexpected means. My only downside was the history lessons on football. The information really interrupted the exciting story. But, was very interesting in its own way. Besides the football lessons it was still a great book.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I have been interested in sports due to the lessons learned in developing leadership and motivational skills. It has always been fascinating to me to see what separates the winners from losers, the good players from the super stars, and the bench players from the starters. I used to think it was their unusual physical abilities. It is apparent to me now the intangible differences lie in the mental conditioning. I thoroughly enjoyed this book and recommend it to one and all. What is especially appealing is that those not interested in sports will still be enthralled, entertained, and captivated. Reading 'The Blind Side' brings home the fact mental toughness starts in one's environment. It is a story bigger than just football. It is an inspirational, motivational, and engergizing story about the differences in a life one person can make. Reginald V. Johnson, author, 'How To Be Happy, Successful, And Rich'
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book was a pretty big disapointment. There was too much about football and not enough about Michael Oher and the Touhys. And Im a football fan. Parts with Michael were good though. Wouldnt have watched movie if I had read book first. Movie was way better.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
The Blind Side by Michael Lewis was a truly great book. Michael Oher was a young poor black kid that had excellent football skills. He was never known as an athletic or academic kid because of where he was from. As Michael got adopted/picked to live with his football coach and his family, he began to live a life of a regular football player, and a normal human being. Over time Michaels academic and athleticism increased, and he became a great player. From there Michael move on into college at Ole Miss. And he went to the NFL getting drafted by the Baltimore Ravens. This book is great because it showed how Michael matured, and overcame though situations throughout his life. This book demonstrates how not only you over time can become better at school, but also at sports. I learned multiple things from this book including that nothing is impossible, and if you put your mind to something, and try your hardest you will eventually succeed. This book deserves a 5 out of 5 stars, and I highly recommend that everyone no matter if they life sports or not, they read this book.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Finally, a book my husband and I can read. The human story is personal and uplifting. The back ground of football was very informative yet not super dry. I actually might be able to watch a pro game now with out being bored to tears.
FredT More than 1 year ago
Both my wife (not a football fan) and me (a football fan) read this book straight through over 2 days. It combines a compelling emotional story (told in the movie) with much more background on the football side of the story and the social side of kids growing up in the shifting sands of absentee parents and economic and social deprivation. At the end of the book, the story of Michael is pulled together in a comprehensive and compelling way that the movie couldn't accomplish.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
The Blind Side the book is even better than the movie which is outstanding. The book is the story of Michael Oher and his tremendous turn around life. After having a childhood where is mother was addicted to crack and living on the street having the to Tuohy family take him in was a big change. Throughout the book you follow Michael on his football journey of becoming a great left tackle and every page you feel like you know him and are cheering for him the whole time. This book has the message of how hard work pays off and it is worth it in the end. Anyone who has seen the movie and liked it will love the book. Also anyone who likes football or a great story should read this book, since it is great for men and women of any age group. My overall rate of this book is five of five stars because it was an entertaining book that I really enjoyed. I liked this book because it was easy to understand and relate to. I love watching football so reading this book painted a picture in your head of what was going on and it made you feel like you were there and you were part of the family or crowd cheering on Michael. A dislike of the this book was since watching the movie made me want to read the book I knew how things were going to turn out, so it took away some of the suspense and shock at the outcomes. Also I was visualizing the movie characters instead of making up my own in my head. The book at some points dragged on and got boring, but I just skipped over them and enjoyed the rest. But I would strongly suggest watching the movie but like always read the book first and they both will be great.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
The Blind Side The Blind Side is about Michael Oher. He is one of 13 children to a mother addicted to crack. They live in the middle of a city owned by gangs and full of drugs and violence. Michael has little to no knowledge and no real home. Then one day, a man named Tony Henderson takes his son to get a Christian education, because of his mothers dying wish. To keep Michael from heading towards a bad end , he takes Michael with him. Because of his choice, he meets a rich, white family that changes his life forever. What I like about this book is that someone who knows nothing about this poor black boy, takes him in and gives him a new life. This is something we all should do, take care of each other. I could not find anything bad about this book. I recommened this book if you like to see triumph in the face of adversity.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Great book that even topped the movie!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
A true,heartfting story about a poor football player off of the streets,who makes a football game a series of suprising events.Michael ore changes the lives of many,espec the Tuii's,who took michael in when he needed it,he was respectful but confused and found his way to a happier life even when he faced hard times.
JoanieS on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Great book,just a little too technical about football for my taste. I actually liked the movie better than the book-that never happens. However, the technical details gave me an education on football-a sport I love.
debs4jc on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
I have no interest in football. So the ability of this author to keep my interest sustained, even when he spends whole chapters explaining various aspects of the game, is remarkable. The way he does that is through making it personal. The main focus is of course on Michael Oher and the Touhy family. I love stories of individuals beating the odds to survive and thrive, and this one certainly fits the bill. The author does spend a bit too much time talking about the technical aspects of football (he didn't make it all interesting for me), but other than that it's a great read.
martin-edwardsk on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Blind Side was a very inspiratational book and it's glad to know that things like this really do happen
Aurone on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
I am not much of a non-fiction book reader. I have read a handful of biographies in my lifetime but fantasy is usually my stock and trade in books. However, I am a football fan, and I did enjoy the movie this book is based on. Luckily, those two things motivated me to pick up The Blind Side by Michael Lewis. This book gives us two stories and lots of insight. The two stories are how the game of Football has changed from 1975 through/to the 1990s and how as a result of this change in football and by the generosity of one family a young man's life changes. Both stories are masterfully told and so enrapturing that I couldn't put the book down. I read the entire book in one day putting off the errands that I need to do until tomorrow just so I could finish.Plot: There are really two stories told in The Blind Side. One story is about how the game of Football changed once passing the football became a major offensive tool. The other story is about a young poor African-American boy name Michael. He is given a rare chance through some unusual circumstances to change his life. These stories intertwine because the change that happens in the game of football is one of the reasons that Michael is given his chance at a new and better life. The stories are told intertwined with one another as one depends on the other. Had the game of football not changed the way it did then perhaps Michael would never have been given the chance he was. The first tale is about how the passing game becomes more essential to the game of football, and how as the passing game becomes more important so do the quarterbacks. Therefore, if the quarterbacks are more important and you spend a lot of money on them, then it becomes important to protect them. Therefore, the protector of the quarterback becomes a key and eventually a high paid player especially the one on the blind side of the quarterback (that would be the left side since most quarterbacks are right handed). This position, the left side tackle, takes an unusual combination of bulk and athleticism that is seldom seen in one individual. Therefore, good and properly built left tackles are rare and now highly paid in the NFL. The Left tackle, the book explains, became particularly important with the introduction of players like Lawrence Taylor who would rush the blind side of quarterbacks to sack them. Lawrence Taylor was a particularly vicious player that injured many a quarterback and ended the career of Joe Theismann, quarterback for the Redskins. Players like Lawrence Taylor increased the importance for a team to have that unique left tackle capable of stopping them and protecting the quarterback from injury. This is because if you lose your quarterback that can cost you the season because good quarterbacks are hard to replace and are often the keystone of an offensive line. It is this evolution of the game of football that opens up the chance or opportunity for Michael Oher to become a great and successful football player since he has that unique build of a great left tackle. Michael is a poor African-American boy who never knew his father and had a drug addict for a mother. He also had 13 siblings many of which he had no real contact with. In some version of charity, a man takes Michael to be enrolled in a rich, all white Christian private school along with his own son Steven. The coaches there see the potential for having Michael on their teams but his academics are a mess and everyone just assumes he is stupid because he doesn't talk much and won't fill out tests. Then by some miracle a rich family, the Tuohys, take Michael under their wing. Sean Tuohy see a lot of himself in the boy, he was also poor when he was young and is a self-made man through the help of sports (in his case basketball), and Leigh Anne just saw someone who needed helping so she helped him. They take him in, feed him, clothe him and help him get his grades up so he can play football in high school a
woodsathome on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
I was surprised to find this was as much about the evolution of professional football as it is about the personal story of Michael Oher. I was even more surprised that I really enjoyed the football narrative. Unless you've been living in a cave, you probably have some familiarity with the personal story even if you (like me) never got around to seeing the movie- it is interesting and compelling, but I must say crying out for an update. As is the narrative ends after Michael's freshman year at Ole Miss.
Periodista on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
This is very much a football book. It's about game strategy, how a change affected pro ball and thus the price of athletes and, secondarily, about the supporting industry of college football. So if you're more interested in the story of Michael Oher, child welfare services in Memphis or Tennessee, the degree of awfulness of Tennessee or Memphis public schools, as I was ... well, there's some information but probably not enough. However, you'll learn how much the movie left out. I wish in particular that the movie had revealed something about the background of Sean, the father. You discover that he has more in common with Michael than the movie suggested. Sean had a loving coach father but he was a scholarship boy all through grade school and high school (where I bet Michael Lewis was not a scholarship boy). When his father became severely ill in high school, Sean often didn't have lunch or lunch money. So it's perfectly logical for him to look out for the poor kids at his own kids' private school. He also went to Ole Miss courtesy of his basketball skills; he loved basketball but hated his college coach. Yet there was no way he could stop playing basketball because that was paying his tuition (though, really, couldn't he have gone back to a state school in La? Tuition would have been trifling in those days, I'd suspect.) I still don't understand why the Tuohys didn't consider having Michael repeat a year of high school and acquire a better educational foundation but the book does clarify why the college football offers were so important; watching the movie I was thinking: "They're rich. They can pay tuition anywhere. Why does this kid need a scholarship?" Answer: he wouldn't want to go to college, or have the incentive to get there *unless he could play a sport* which is the means to reach the pro level. OK, so I've been sheltered I am from the rules of southern college football. I can't follow a football game, don't like the sport. The mantra of teachers, parents and and former athletic scholarship beneficiaries I've known has always been that the athletic prowess was a means to pay for a college degree: you might end up in the pros, but for sure you'd have a degree and a way to earn a living better than that of your parents. As for these guys like Michael at Ole Miss, if they don't go pro or last long as a pro, are they qualified to do anything? Lewis barely touches on that in the book but he does make something of a suggestion in an online interview with an annoying interviewer called Robert Birnbaum. I don't think it's to radically upgrade educational standards and admittance criteria at these football schools. He also explains what those BYU correspondence courses are about.Finally, you get very little sense of Michael's inner life, his birth family and how the heck this kid survived before his rescue. How did he find food? Was his mother ever a mother? Although Michael was still staying at his mother's home when he started Briarcrest and Leigh Ann encouraged him to continue to visit her, it seems that none of the Tuohys had met her or his brothers at the time of publication. I wonder if Lewis even tried. I understand Michael's desire to not to dwell on his hardships. It's a pretty natural response of people that have endured terrible trauma too. Adults in developing countries from poverty-stricken childhoods often have that attitude too. But now Michael has his own co-written memoir! He must have changed his mind. At any rate, it has to have more details than The Blind Side.
FolkeB on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
The Blind Side by Michael Lewis is an extraordinary story that evokes a wide variety of emotion, in which the reader cries, laughs, and cheers for the characters. It is based on the life of Michael Williams Jr., a poor child that grew up in Memphis, Tennessee and eventually, through hard work, dedication, and the generous heart of a wealthy woman, was able to play football in the National Football League. His mother was a crack cocaine addict and his father was in and out of prison. One of his friend¿s dad applied him and his son to a private high school in Memphis, where he met Leigh Anne Tuohy. After getting to know the poor boy, she adopted him, fed him, clothed him, and tutored him so he could graduate high school. When Michael announced his decision to play football at the Tuohy¿s alma mater, the NCAA began an investigation into whether the Tuohy¿s influenced Michael¿s decision to attend Ole Miss. Throughout this hear-warming story of success, the author does a fabulous job of engaging the reader, and the reader almost feels as if they are living along side Michael Williams as he faces, and overcomes, the obstacles in life.Michael