- by John Branch
From the publisher: "Branch is renowned for covering the offbeat in the sporting world, from alligator hunting to wingsuit flying. Sidecountry features such classic Branch pieces, including 'Snow Fall,' about downhill skiers caught in an avalanche in Washington state, and 'Dawn Wall,' about rock climbers trying to scale Yosemite’s famed El Capitan. In other articles, Branch introduces people whose dedication and decency transcend their sporting lives, including a revered football coach rebuilding his tornado-devastated town in Iowa and a girls’ basketball team in Tennessee that plays on despite never winning a game. The book culminates with his moving personal pieces, including 'Children of the Cube,' about the surprising drama of Rubik’s Cube competitions as seen through the eyes of Branch’s own sports-hating son, and 'The Girl in the No. 8 Jersey,' about a mother killed in the 2017 Las Vegas shooting whose daughter happens to play on Branch’s daughter’s soccer team. Sidecountry gathers the best of Branch’s work for the first time, featuring 20 of his favorites from the more than 2,000 pieces he has published."