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View Full Version : STROKE - A NOVEL



GeorgeV
09-13-2004, 01:17 PM
Just wondering how many of you have read this book yet and what you think of it.

I bought it from the author who was selling them at the BCA tournament in Vegas in May. I loved it. It's about a young female pro golfer who injures her shoulder and turns to pool as an outlet for her competitive drive. It takes her from being a pretty good amateur through league play and into the beginnign pro ranks. One chapter takes place at a BCA tournament in Vegas, and I thought the author did a masterful job of realistically portraying the experience. I read the book over a couple of days during the BCA tournament, and it was almost surreal how accurately he portrayed it.

I think it would make a fantastic movie. It's got everything: pool, gambling, love, sex (only a little), team competition, you name it. And the fact that it is about a female turning pro pool player fits in nicely with the popularity of the WPBA right now. A couple of cameos by Alison Fisher and Karen Corr would really make it fly. I don't think it could get quite to "Color of Money" status, but darned close.

What do you think?

woody_968
09-13-2004, 01:22 PM
I haven't read the book, but from what you are describing I would watch the movie if they made one /ccboard/images/graemlins/laugh.gif

Barbara
09-13-2004, 01:36 PM
George,

I'm reading it right now and am having a hard time putting it down when I get the chance to pick it up.

The only two inconsistencies I see about the Vegas Nats is that he constantly refers to the Valley tables as 6 footers when they're 7-footers. Plus, he has the men's teams playing the women's teams in Open Teams events and unless it's because I haven't been out there in two years, I thought they were separate and didn't intermix.

Other than that the only fault I could find with the book concerning the BCA Nats was not mentioning the perfectly coiffed Rip at the Las Vegas Billiards Club and the Riv's magical beer-sucking carpet. /ccboard/images/graemlins/smile.gif

But then again, this book is fiction, Rip and the carpet are not. /ccboard/images/graemlins/grin.gif

It's a good read. And it would probably make a great movie if it kept to the book and not to what a screen writer thinks the audience should see.

Barbara

KevinT
09-13-2004, 02:46 PM
Who's the author?

Barbara
09-13-2004, 03:00 PM
The author is Carlos Ledson Miller.

He sent me and the other WPBA Regional Tour Coordinators a copy of his book and a rebate deal if I decide to sell them in bulk quantities. The book retails for $15.

Barbara

GeorgeV
09-14-2004, 12:53 PM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote Barbara:</font><hr> George,

I'm reading it right now and am having a hard time putting it down when I get the chance to pick it up.

The only two inconsistencies I see about the Vegas Nats is that he constantly refers to the Valley tables as 6 footers when they're 7-footers. Plus, he has the men's teams playing the women's teams in Open Teams events and unless it's because I haven't been out there in two years, I thought they were separate and didn't intermix.

Other than that the only fault I could find with the book concerning the BCA Nats was not mentioning the perfectly coiffed Rip at the Las Vegas Billiards Club and the Riv's magical beer-sucking carpet. /ccboard/images/graemlins/smile.gif

But then again, this book is fiction, Rip and the carpet are not. /ccboard/images/graemlins/grin.gif

It's a good read. And it would probably make a great movie if it kept to the book and not to what a screen writer thinks the audience should see.

Barbara <hr /></blockquote>

I agree with the inconsistencies you mentioned, but like you, I don't think they detract too much from the book. It's still a great read.

I wasn't involved in the BCA National 8-ball tournament, so I couldn't recognize the inconsistencies regarding it. I went to Vegas simply to sweat the Pro 9-ball tournament (and take in a few shows). He got that down pretty well, except that they didn't hold it in the Riviera penthouse ballroom this year but just down the hall from the 8-ball tournament on the ground floor. I was bugged a little by his always mentioning the colors of the balls being shot, e.g. the red 3-ball, the purple 4-ball, etc. That would have been okay during the first mention, but after a couple of chapters, it got old. Still...I think the story-line was great and would be a terrific movie. Men and women both would love it.

I really do think STROKE made into a movie would be a good shot in the arm for the sport/industry. And Alison, Karen, Jeanette, and the other female pros are so charasmatic, they could do some remarkable cameos (or more).

Any Hollywood producers out there looking for a project?

Chris Cass
09-14-2004, 01:09 PM
Seems Grady' idea is not such a joke to me. hmmmmm

C.C.

cycopath
09-25-2004, 10:45 PM
I just finished the book no more than 2 hours ago. I really enjoyed reading it. It's written quite well, barring the few discrepancies mentioned earlier. Also, I just can't handle the cover, the woman (Sedonia, I guess) is using a terrible bridge. And she's like right up on the cueball. It bugs me everytime I look at it.

Great book though, a must read for the billard enthusiast.

I hope it does well for the author.

cuechick
09-26-2004, 04:48 AM
I thought I'd tack on a review about a book I read a few months ago and also mentioned here. It is by Haven Kimmel, an acclaimed writer, and pool is not the main focus but more like a supporting character. It was a bit slow in the middle but very well written, and I was very impressed with her descriptions of the pool scenes, esp. for a non player. I really liked the main character and it does start to pick up steam about 1/2 way through.
The author spent a year hanging out at a pool hall and doing research, and it shows.
I would definitely rec it, though I think it would appeal more to women than men...it will probably be out in paper back soon.

http://images.amazon.com/images/P/0743247752.01.LZZZZZZZ.jpg

wolfdancer
09-26-2004, 10:51 PM
Never read the book, but I used to read Stroke, the magazine.

nhp
09-27-2004, 04:39 AM
I've read a few books about pool, but I have yet to find one that I like. The reason why they all sucked is because not ONE of the books had a guy who had a cue that when broken down turned into nun-chucks. That just pisses me off. That is the most awesome idea ever and nobody even bothered to put it in. From now on, I am not going to read anymore books about pool unless someone tells me that someone has a cue that turns into nun-chucks. Thanks.

Barbara
09-27-2004, 05:05 AM
I thought the ending was a bit too much. I mean, c'mon, that just doesn't happen.

It could be altered to seem more plausible and it wouldn't lose anything.

Barbara

wolfdancer
09-27-2004, 10:45 AM
What was the ending? did she enter a convent, like in Camelot?
So she gave up the mega-bucks playing golf, for the austere lifestyle of pro pool...."sounds logical"

wolfdancer
09-27-2004, 10:54 AM
It's an awesome idea...go with it!!!! It's a book begging to be written.Take a one year sabbitical, and author the book...could be the number one seller at Vanity Press.And to appeal to the prurient interests of the pool proles....have a love scene on the table...

cuechick
09-27-2004, 02:25 PM
What! Barabra, please don't reveal the ending here...maybe pm it to them, some people may want to read it!

Barbara
09-27-2004, 03:17 PM
Absolutely not!! I want people to read this book! It's pretty darn good and I found I didn't want to put it down when it "got going".

I'm serious when I say it would make a good movie.

Barbara

cuechick
03-22-2005, 07:23 AM
I finally ordered a copy of this book and have to say, though I have enjoyed it from the standpoint it is a non-stop pool story with a certain degree of authenticity. I have also hated much of it as well...so much of it I find hard to swallow, from the main characters ability to break and run almost every game she plays (apparently balls never get tied up for Se-don-ia) to the repetitive descriptions (the red 3 ball, the yellow stripped 9 ball...okay I am on page 250, I got the colors!!) to more repetition with the use of archaic pool terms, i.e. "Yeah, he's got gamble."...I do not think I have ever heard this term in my entire pool career, yet I have heard almost a dozen times so far in this book?

Also very aggravating is the main characters inability to understand the importance of safety play "Ah she don't take to snookering" and most of all, how some could go from not even knowing the importance of owning a cue, to beating her first coach (who she never offers to pay and treats like dirt) in just a week?

I think this book negates the difficulty of mastering the skills to play pool and the extensive knowledge necessary. I might have bought that she was a natural born shot maker, but the author wants us to believe that she was able to study a few books and tapes (apparently none where safety play was involved) and she is able to succeed?

I also do not get how if you had a shoulder injury how that would not effect you in pool? The many inconsistencies with the BCA's structure is also nerve racking. Her team would have played in the woman's division, and any team that places 4th, would have been put into the Master's the next year...(i.e. the Canadians they play) I also have a hard time with a man writing from a woman's point of view, it gives the whole book a slightly false note.

All that said, I am still enjoying it! Yeah, I guess I love pool that much, and even a flawed pool novel is better than no pool novel! I do recommend it from that perspective...and since I am only a little more than 1/2 way through, I am sure there will be more fun and cringing to come.

SpiderMan
03-22-2005, 09:32 AM
CC,

Good points all, I often find myself reading a book and wondering why they didn't send it to me for editing and proofreading prior to publication /ccboard/images/graemlins/grin.gif

On the other hand, I do agree that a shoulder injury would be much more devastating to a golfer than a pool player because of the range of motion required in the swing. In pool, it's not often you need to move your shoulder during the shot.

SpiderMan

BigRigTom
03-22-2005, 10:16 AM
I was intrigued by all the praise and now I am convince I have to read this book. It only took someone who is a bit lest anxious to praise it I guess. This sounds like a review I might have written because it sounds like you like the book in spite of all the annoyances with the loose use of the facts. Thanks for the honest appraisal. /ccboard/images/graemlins/cool.gif

Scott Lee
03-22-2005, 12:10 PM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote cuechick:</font><hr> I am sure there will be more fun and cringing to come. <hr /></blockquote>

cuechick...LOVE those descriptions! You go girl! LOL

Scott Lee

Keith Talent
03-22-2005, 02:06 PM
Cuechick,

I also liked "Something Rising" ... a for-real book, and the pool sections, though there could've been more on the game, didn't seem to hit any false notes. Somebody dropped the book on my desk at work a few months back ... I read it in a few days, very absorbing. And it was right on about life in the Midwest, too, I thought. Wonder how the author plays ...

Haven't read or seen "Stroke" though ... Jim Wyche drives me nuts with that "pot the red 3" stuff, too!

cuechick
03-22-2005, 02:27 PM
Well I am really glad to hear you liked Something Rising, I wasn't sure it would appeal to men...glad to see I was wrong. It's definatly the better written of the two...but I admit, Stroke is better written than I had expected.

catscradle
03-23-2005, 07:39 AM
Good and accurate review, I felt the same way.
Not great literature by any stretch, plays real fast and loose with reality. It's a fast, easy read I'd recommend to pool players who don't mind a little variance from the reality of playing pool, but I don't think it is good enough to recommend it a non-poolplayer.

cuechick
03-23-2005, 11:10 AM
That is a very good point, it would not even occure to me to rec to a non-pool player, where as Something Rising or The Hustler would have a much wider appeal.