six books to read before the Olympic and Paralympic Games

six books to read before the Olympic and Paralympic Games
six books to read before the Olympic and Paralympic Games

Eighty days and as many opportunities to read. Before taking on the television events between July and August, these six books could give you a taste for reading, sport or both. These works each offer a part of what the Olympic Games represent, for enthusiasts as well as for those who ignore them or fear them.

Investigation into the organization of the Games, testimony from a Paralympic athlete, small sports dictionary, art book, portraits of sportswomen, youth collection… -: sport offers you six readings in the run-up to the Paris 2024 Olympic Games .

The 100 words of the marathonAnaïs Brosseau and Cyril Petit

The 100 words of the marathon, Anaïs Brosseau and Cyril Petit. What do I know?, 128 p., 10 €

This brief lexicography has the elegance of evacuating renunciation in the beginning, with the word “abandonment”, first of a hundred, before approaching the more attractive perspectives. She juggles between legendary names (Emil Zátopek, Alain Mimoun) and key notions of the discipline (hare, VMA), without forgetting to mention the shadows of the picture (doping, cheating) and the developments of a timeless event (feminization, non-binary, Strava). Moving freely from history to modernity and from technical to romantic, the words chosen are pretexts for the story of a myth of unsuspected richness.

The little dictionary of the great test, which is aimed “to the curious as well as the enthusiasts”directly answers all the questions that the marathon raises.

Paris 2024 – A city facing Olympic violenceJade Lindgaard

Paris 2024 – A city facing Olympic violence, Jade Lindgaard. Divergences, 200 p., 15 €

“I didn’t want to write a book against the Olympic Games.” The first line of this investigative book escapes preterition through the rigor that runs through each chapter. We read the stories of residents of Seine-Saint-Denis forced to move, but above all the investigative work of the journalist from Mediapart Jade Lindgaard. She weighs every claim and verifies every number, providing a platform for “the most vulnerable inhabitants of the most unloved territory in France” without ever going beyond the framework of “elucidation story”.

In contrast to the rave biographies of those who magnetize the cameras, Jade Lindgaard recounts the lives turned upside down against their will by the Olympic Games. THE “1,500 people displaced” or those “dispossessed” of their neighborhood testify, with the support of official documents and interviews by the author with various political representatives. The final pages offer new perspectives towards “the counter-projects” which flourish in Seine-Saint-Denis and the vitality of associative and citizen initiatives in the department.

The gold RushErnest Pignon-Ernest and Pierre-Louis Basse

The gold Rush, Ernest Pignon-Ernest and Pierre-Louis Basse. In Exergue, 240 pp., 39.90 €

This art book offers original portraits of around thirty athletes, with drawings by visual artist Ernest Pignon-Ernest and texts by writer Pierre-Louis Basse. The figures of Olympism are finely illustrated by the pencil of one and the pen of the other. This art object was born from the collision between a writer and journalist specializing in sport, and a precursor of urban art who had only drawn sport once before, for a Roland-Garros poster.

The result is a true object of art, where the designer magnifies the movement with his unique charcoal style, and the writer exalts the story and the exploit.

Champions! 90 exceptional sportswomenLaurie Delhostal, Cécile Grès, Louison

Champions! 90 exceptional sportswomen, Laurie Delhostal, Cécile Grès, Louison. Editions de La Martinière, 192 p., 19.95 €

The first equal Olympic Games in history (5,250 athletes of each gender) are an opportunity to highlight sportswomen who deserve a central place in the history of sport. This all-female book, designed by authors, illustrators, editors, proofreaders, layout artists and manufacturers, highlights little-known sports legends, often for the sole reason that they are women.

These sportswomen who sometimes grew up without an idol are today models in their discipline. The book dedicated to them is a compendium of culture to catch up on, neglected legends and inspiring journeys, also giving pride of place to illustrations.

Dream of I(they)Mathieu Thomas

Dream of I(they), Mathieu Thomas. City editions, 240 pp., 16.90 €

“Mathieu discovered badminton at 28.” This is the preamble to the unique story of a European champion athlete, world medalist and 17 times French champion in his discipline. That of a parabadminton player who is preparing for the Paris 2024 Paralympic Games, more than ten years after losing the mobility of his right leg due to cancer.

Bearer of hope, always determined to “get over pain and failure”Mathieu Thomas recounts his journey, both human and sporting, up to his dream of a medal at home, at the Paris 2024 Paralympic Games.

Intrigues at the Olympic and Paralympic GamesCaroline Fact

Intrigues at the Olympic and Paralympic Games, Caroline Fact. Hugo Youth, 9.90 €

The adventures of Vadim, Aya, Marin, Zoé and Anis are a beautiful gateway to reading, the monuments of Paris, but also sport and its values. The five investigators, aged 9 to 11, work hard to solve all the puzzles put before them throughout the streets of the capital and the events of the Olympic and Paralympic Games.

The four volumes of the collection The mystery of the missing medals, The Champion’s Talisman, Two opponents for a final And The treasure of Versailles are all fun investigations with particular attention paid to the “representation of disabled sport and cultural diversity”.



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