Welcome to the world of women's gymnastics and figure skating--the real world that happens away from the cameras, at the training camps and in the private lives of these talented teenage competitors. From starvation diets and debilitating injuries to the brutal tactics of tyrannical gymnastics guru Béla Károlyi, Little Girls in Pretty Boxes portrays the horrors endured by girls at the hands of their coaches and sometimes their own families--and is now updated with a new introduction and foreword that address the sexual abuse scandal perpetrated by USA Gymnastics national team doctor, Larry Nassar. This groundbreaking book shows how a longstanding culture of abuse made young gymnasts perfect targets for a sexual predator, and continues to plead for sanity, safety, and an end to our national obsession: winning at any cost.
Joan Ryan is an award-winning journalist and the author of four books. Her groundbreaking book Little Girls in Pretty Boxes was named one of the Top 100 Sports Books of All Time by Sports Illustrated and one of the Top 50 Sports Books of All Time by the Guardian. Throughout her career, Ryan has been awarded thirteen Associated Press Sports Editors awards, the National Headliner Award, the Women's Sports Foundation's Journalism Award and the Fabulous Feminist Award from the San Francisco chapter of NOW. She is a founding trustee of Coaching Corps in Oakland, CA, and the Association of Women in Sports Media. Since 2008, she has been a media consultant with the San Francisco Giants.
One of Sports Illustrated's "Top 100 Sports Books of All Time" One of Guardian (UK)'s "Top 50 Sports Books of All Time"
"Scathing...profoundly important."—San Francisco Chronicle
"Stunning and frightening."—John Feinstein, New York Times bestselling author of A Good Walk Spoiled and TheFirst Major
"Confirms your worst suspicions about 15-year-old gymnasts in 10-year-old bodies and the terrible price they pay, regardless of success."—Phil Mushnick, New York Post
"This book will open the eyes of every girl and parent with dreams of the Olympics, and it will change forever the way America looks at two of its most beloved sports."—Billie Jean King