Reading List: Relentless Spirit

UPDATED: November 6, 2016
PUBLISHED: November 6, 2016

In this group autobiography, Missy Franklin and her parents explore the family dynamic behind her breakout at the 2012 London Olympics. Only 17, she won five medals, four of them gold, and set a world record in the 200-meter backstroke. “There’s no blueprint for raising an Olympic champion,” Franklin writes. “My parents certainly weren’t thinking this way—they just wanted to see me happy.”

It’s a testament to Franklin’s grit that she’s writing additional chapters for this book on her disappointing performance in Rio de Janeiro this summer. After finishing last in her heat in the 200-meter freestyle, she confessed on Twitter, “So heartbroken by my results from last night. Doing everything I can to keep my head up and keep fighting with all I have.” That’s the spirit that has pulled her through injuries and other setbacks. No doubt it will do so again.

Related: Gabby Douglas Wants More

Relentless Spirit
By Missy Franklin and D.A. and Dick Franklin
December; Dutton; $27


This article originally appeared in the December 2016 issue of SUCCESS magazine.

Chauncey Mabe is a freelance writer, book critic, and blogger in Miami, Fla. For 23 years he served as Book Editor and Senior Entertainment Writer at the Sun-Sentinel in Fort Lauderdale. He was Book Blogger for the Florida Center for the Literary Arts, the parent organization of Miami Book Fair International, from 2009 to 2012. He also blogs for the Betsy Hotel South Beach hotel, which sponsors literary events year round. His reviews and feature stories have appeared in publications such as the Toronto Globe & Mail, the Serving House Journal, Inspicio, the Palm Beach Arts Paper, the Baltimore Sun, the Juneau Empire, and the Chicago Tribune.