Jclombardi’s book review.
I got a request from the publisher to review Life After Favre. I saw the glowing reviews about the book from several writers and bloggers in the Packers nation. Having written extensively about the Packers in established sports blogs, a cosmopolitan perspective seemed missing about the ongoing saga about the post-Favre era, especially its national fan base with its divided loyalties. With great insight, humor, and pictures, the book tells a great story about this extraordinary team, its iconic town, and its singular fans coping with life in the quarterback Rodgers era in Packerland.
The story focused upon the lifelong Packers fan’s journey from Los Angeles back to the heart and soul of the Packer nation with its classic NFL team, its Holy Lambeau field, and its iconic way of town life in Middle American culture far away from the concrete & plastic jungle of megalopolises and megasports entertainment business. The author’s views about the messy divorce between Packers management and legendary quarterback Favre is great coverage. He foresaw the possibility that Favre would not stay retired and would join the Vikings in the North Division of the NFC. His profile about the rising star quarterback Rodgers has genuine appeal. His great profiles of former Packer greats are authentic readings. He takes the readers from the practice field to the locker room, to tailgate parties, and to Packers bars throughout the country. His narrative journey across America to meet the green and gold diehard fans is great reading. Thus, for most sports fans and Packer nation, the book is a fashionable addition to their library.
Yet, something is missing here reflecting the awful public relations campaign by Packers management that dealt with the messy Favre divorce and transition to the Rodgers era. The exclusive point is that if the book isn’t focused about Packer life without Favre and about former Packer legend Favre playing in the NFC North Division, then guess who is the iconic “No. 4” among fans on the front cover and on the back cover showing the current divided young loyalties in Packerland? Further, the final chapter ends with a Favre story. Finally, the dated epilogue is simply a prelude to the 2009 Packers season. Honestly, Hanrahan went back home to Wisconsin in search of a nostalgic marketable Hollywood story and its Capra corn “for-the-fans” ending. Instead, he got dealt a bitter 6-10 past season that reflected a rebuilding Packers team and lacking the necessary intangibles to win games. Meanwhile, the wannabes bloggers plug another sports book from a parochial Packer writer wanting to make big bucks.
Today, the North Division in the NFL is about the emerging Rodgers era headed toward the playoffs covered throughout the Packer nation and the emerging Favre’s Vikings era headed toward the playoffs covered by the Favre watch throughout the sports nation including Fox, Espn, and Wisconsin sports press. Further, although both sides talked about how they had moved on, Vikings QB Favre got revenge winning both games against the Packers and having a MVP 2009 season. As fair and balanced commentaries from my Favre watch in the sports blogs, I noted that GM TT and HC McCarthy may privately wish to see an end to the nightmarish Favre divorce in the new Rodgers era of Packerland. Yet, the fans will remember legendary QB Favre’s legacy and these future sports scenarios: (1) he is one of the greatest NFL quarterbacks to play the game (2) the Packers will retire his No. 4 and (3) he will be an iconic NFL Hall of Famer. Maybe all good things under a golden sun in an autumn day can go on forever, forever, forever. It’s great theater & great football. For the Packer nation and publishers, I suggest that they screen book proposals better and they include this iconic Packer fan and published author in future meetings about writing the definitive sequel when these hard cold facts become NFL reality.