Saturday, November 21, 2009

Book Review: Monday Morning Quarterback

I read Peter King's Monday Morning Quarterback column every week, and have since 2000, and consider it absolutely required reading for any NFL fan. PK, for his faults and foibles, has his pulse on the NFL like pretty much nobody else and there's a nugget or interview in MMQB you won't find elsewhere. Like most every other columnist, he realizes he could sell a collection of columns. Thus, Monday Morning Quarterback: A Fully Caffeinated Guide to Everything You Need to Know about the NFL. The primary content of MMQB the Book is a collection of the main essays of MMQBs from the early years up to late 2008, with a little more content. The little more content consists of "Ten Things I Think I Think" gimmick from MMQB on various subjects, including things like if he were commissioner for a day. The page margins also have items from the other MMQB gimmicks, like travel notes. Beyond this content, there's also a couple page travel vignettes, plus some back stories from PK's SI magazine cover stories.

Re-reading the MMQB opening essays, I'm reminded that, if you haven't read MMQB by Thursday, there's no need to do so. I remembered, at some vague level, a few of the pieces, and had no need to re-read them. While I'm sure PK worked hard on the other pieces, none is particularly good, and they mostly read like what they are-filler to say there's actual new content in the book and it's not just a collection of ephemeral essays. That sort of thing doesn't really work. PK is a reporter and his columns aren't interesting or broad enough to really be worth reading after the fact. Monday Morning Quarterback the book is just another example of a columnist trying to sell a book without bothering to actually write a book, and like virtually all examples of the genre, it's not worth a reader's time. I'll still be reading MMQB in 36 hours, though.

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