Love, Zac: Small-Town Football and the Life and Death of an American Boy

Algonquin. Sept. 2020. 288p. ISBN 9781616209087. $27.95. SPORTS
In Iowa, Zac Easter grew up playing football and was known for his hard-nosed and aggressive style of play. Tragically at the age of 24, he died by suicide, after repeated head trauma and the ongoing effects of CTE. In Love Zac, award-winning sportswriter Forgrave tells the tragic story of Easter through those who knew him best: family, friends, coaches, and teammates. The opening of the book will immediately grab readers’ attention and leave them wanting to know more about this tragic story. Easter knew he was losing control, and wanted to make an impact on the future of how CTE is researched. While there are other books being published about the tragic impact CTE can have especially on young athletes, it is important that these stories get told. This book differs from Growing Up on the Gridiron in that it is more about the history of football, and the violence that is involved in playing the sport. Forgrave delves deep into football’s violent origins and the lasting impact it has had on the game.
VERDICT A tragic, moving story that will linger with readers of sports and biographies in general.
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