Once a Runner3 books in series
Racing the Rain Publisher's Summary
From the author of the New York Times best seller Once a Runner - "the best novel ever written about running" (Runner's World) - comes that novel's prequel, the story of a world-class athlete coming of age in the 1950s and '60s on Florida's Gold Coast.
Quenton Cassidy's first foot races are with nature itself: the summer storms that sweep through his subtropical neighborhood. Shirtless, barefoot, and brown as a berry, Cassidy is a skinny, mouthy kid with aspirations to be a great athlete. As he explores his primal surroundings along the Loxahatchee River and the nearby Atlantic Ocean, he is befriended by Trapper Nelson, "the Tarzan of the Loxahatchee", a well-known eccentric who lives off the land.
In junior high school, quite by chance, Cassidy discovers an ability to run long distances, but his real dream is to be a basketball star. Still, Cassidy absorbs Nelson's view of running as a way of relating to and interacting with the natural world. Though he is warned of Nelson's checkered past, Cassidy dismisses the stories as superstitious gossip - until his small town is stunned by the disappearance of a prominent judge and his wife. Cassidy's loyalty to his friend is severely tested just as his opportunity to make his mark as a gifted runner comes to fruition.
John Parker's prequel to the New York Times best seller Once a Runner vividly captures how a runner is formed and the physical endurance, determination, and mind-set he develops on the way to becoming a champion. Racing the Rain is an epic coming-of-age classic about the environments and friendships that shape us all.