Books that deal with cross-country skiing in general, and the American Birkebeiner specifically come along way too infrequently for my liking. That being the case, it's pretty much our duty as cross-country skiers to pick up novels like these when they do appear on the shelves (especially when they're being put out by a traditional publisher as is the case with "Beyond Birkie Fever").
Fun and games aside, "Beyond Birkie Fever" might soon bear the distinction of being the "definitive" Birkie book. The novel is a humorous memoir about how a simple thing like a ski race in the Northwoods can be the catalyst for a life of adventure and international travel. Although the narrative spans the globe, this books is grounded in Hayward, and expresses a sincere love and appreciation for America's greatest Cross-country ski race. You can read more about the book on the publisher's web page here (you can also find a link to Cara Jo O'Connell's web page there, she's the artist--originally from the Twin Cities--who did the cover).
As you can see from the cover blurb, this novel also contains "Founder David Landgraf's Account of the First Birkie" which all by itself would be worth the cover price of the book (and should grab the attention of all CyclovaXC members since he's one of us!).
But the best news about this book is that, although it's not going to be released until October 1st 2011, the author is looking to generate some reviews, so .pdfs will be available pretty soon. If there's anybody out there reading this blog entry who is interested in getting a hold of an electronic copy of "Beyond Birkie Fever" and putting a review up on Amazon, you can write the author at firstname.lastname@example.org (put "Beyond Birkie Fever--Review .pdf" in the subject line).
For those of you who are already sure this is going to be "must have" addition to your garage of Birkie memorabilia (or for those of you who just want to help out Mr. Rhein...do so, I know the guy, he owes me money), then you can pre-order the book from the publisher here or from amazon here.
Actually, there are a LOT of CyclovaXC people represented in this book...I'll tell you why that is later. :)