The 2014 One Book for Sarasota County is Muck City: Winning and Losing in Football’s Forgotten Town by Bryan Mealer.
Drawing comparisons to the 1990 bestseller Friday Night Lights, this football narrative chronicles the evolution of high school football in Belle Glade, Fla.—among the poorest communities in the U.S. and defined by the fertile black silt that helped build a sugarcane-farming empire. The city, populated predominantly by African-Americans and Hispanics, is home to Glades Central High School, an academic underachiever whose football team has sent more than 30 players to the NFL since 1985. Mealer followed the 2010 Raiders in pursuit of a record-breaking seventh state championship… Mealer recounts Belle Glade’s colorful history, reports from living rooms and locker rooms, and perfectly captures the area’s distinct dialect.
(Publishers Weekly, October, 2013)
Learn more about Muck City by following the links below:
- Bryan Mealer’s Website
- New York Times Review: Must Win, “Muck City,'” by Bryan Mealer
- The Post Game: Author Bryan Mealer Talks “Muck City”
- NPR Bryan Mealer interview and Muck City excerpt: For Some, Gridiron The Only Escape From “Muck City”
- Start a One Book conversation with the Muck City Discussion Guide
Learn more about Belle Glade’s football history:
- ESPN article: The Chase
- New York Times article: High School Football; A Town Where Football Is the Glue and the Hope
- New York Times photo slideshow: The Way Out
- Ball State University video: Muck City Football (below)