The Most Expensive Game in Town: The Rising Cost of Youth Sports and the Toll on Today’s Families

Mark Hyman, Author
Mark Hyman. Beacon, $24.95 (176p) ISBN 978-0-8070-0136-3
Open Ebook - 103 pages - 978-0-8070-0137-0
Paperback - 160 pages - 978-0-8070-0144-8
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Following up his previous book, Until It Hurts, Hyman, a sports journalist for Business Week, further probes the soaring cost of the youth sports economy, targeting the dreams and aspirations of parents obsessed with the hope of transforming their children into professional athletes. The author scores high points in telling the stories of families in Ohio, Kansas, and California, who pushed their budgets near their breaking point to get their kids the best equipment, coaching, and summer camps. While slick-talking advocates of the youth sports business promise great results from the various programs and academies, the cash-strapped parents feel guilt for not taking advantage of every opportunity to guarantee their charges fame and fortune. He wisely poses key queries about media overexposure, financial sponsorship in the inner city vs. suburbs, and government inaction. However, Hyman’s slender volume presents more questions than answers, touching on topics rather than going into them in depth, yet he still puts some significant issues on the front burner. (Mar.)
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