Home Sweet Hardwood

Home Sweet Hardwood

A Title IX Trailblazer Breaks Barriers Through Basketball

Non-Fiction - Sports
206 Pages
Reviewed on 10/28/2013
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Author Biography

As a pioneer for women’s basketball, Pat McKinzie is the first female athletic scholarship recipient in Illinois and first female player to score 1,000 points at ISU. She is one of the first Women’s Professional Basketball League draftees and female inductees in the Hall of Fame at Illinois State. After a 1983 car accident in France ended her playing career, McKinzie began to focus her energy on coaching. With thirty years of experience in coaching, teaching, and writing, she has cultivated an impressive career from hall-of-fame coach to basketball agent, student advisor, columnist, and blogger. McKinzie has a bachelor’s degree in education from Illinois State University. She is married to a Frenchman with whom she raised two Third Culture Kids, and she currently resides in Switzerland.

    Book Review

Reviewed by Bil Howard for Readers' Favorite

Battling to make women’s basketball what it has become today was not an easy journey and Pat McKinzie’s story, Home Sweet Hardwood: A Title IX Trailblazer Breaks Barriers Through Basketball, shows exactly how difficult it was. From early in life, Pat was more comfortable running, jumping, throwing, and shooting, than she was playing with dolls and easy-bake ovens. In a time when there were both racial tensions and struggles with gender roles, Pat continued to fight for the game that she loved. After the passage of Title IX, which was the beginning of equalizing sports programs for women, Pat got her chance to move forward, doing what she loved. She was the first female athletic scholarship in Illinois and built upon that victory, though many challenges still lay in her path. Without faltering, Pat continued to pursue her dream and was one of the inaugural draftees in the Women’s professional basketball league. Her resilience and determination have been an inspiration to countless people through the years.

It is impossible to be anything but inspired by Pat McKinzie’s account of her battle as a pioneer of women’s basketball. Home Sweet Hardwood is an interesting, informative, and enlightening story. Observing the courage and determination with which Pat pursued her dream goes beyond gender and racial lines to reach a much deeper place within us all. This is a profound story of the strength of the human spirit in the face of extreme challenges. Inspiring, illuminating and awesome; Home Sweet Hardwood is certain to have a profound impact, not only on women of all ages, but upon anyone who has ever aspired to overcome all odds for something or someone that they love.