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Icebreaker: The Autobiography of Rudy Galindo [Paperback]

Rudy Galindo
4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (9 customer reviews)
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Book Description

May 1 1998
The inspiring story of America's first openly gay figure skater reveals the incredible inner strength that brought Galindo through his worst hours. "A stirring and insightful book".--"San Francisco Chronicle". of photos.

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Product Description

From Publishers Weekly

Rumor has had it that many male figure skaters are homosexual. Galindo was the first to declare his gay orientation; his sometimes startling candor is revealed throughout this autobiography: "When I had sex for the first time, I didn't know I needed to practice safe sex.... you might find that hard to believe. But I was completely immersed in my skating." The youngest of three children of a Mexican American family, with a father who was supportive but tyrannical and a mother who was periodically institutionalized, Galindo grew up on the wrong side of the tracks in San Jose, Calif. His elder brother, George, also gay, was banished from the house after he came out to his parents, served a prison sentence and eventually died of AIDS. A successful young singles skater, the author joined Kristi Yamaguchi to win the U.S. National Pairs Championship in 1989 and 1990, but she decided to go her own way in 1990. Galindo was devastated but, after many vicissitudes, including the death of his father, he triumphed in the singles, winning the U.S. National Championship and finishing third in the World Championships in 1996. Much of his success he attributes to the self-sacrifice of his sister, Laura; and with the help of Marcus, who collaborated last with Greg Louganis in Breaking the Surface, Galindo reveals his debt to her and to supportive friends. The result is a moving autobiography.
Copyright 1998 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.

From Library Journal

Galindo has faced more than his share of barriers on the road to fame and glory in the figure skating world. He grew up in a working-class Mexican American family, and many sacrifices had to be made to enable him to pursue an expensive dream. Although he and his partner, Kristi Yamaguchi, appeared to be headed for the Olympics, Yamaguchi ultimately decided to go the singles route. His mother suffered from mental illness, his father died of a heart attack, he was openly homosexual, and his brother and two coaches died of AIDS. However, Galindo's fortitude and determination enabled him to become the U.S. men's figure skating champion in 1996. With the help of writer Marcus, coauthor of Greg Louganis's biography Breaking the Surface (Random, 1995), Galindo smoothly invites the reader to share in his struggles and triumphs. Recommended.?J. Sara Paulk, Coastal Plain Regional Lib., Tifton, Ga.
Copyright 1997 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.

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Customer Reviews

4.6 out of 5 stars
4.6 out of 5 stars
Most helpful customer reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Makes You Feel What He Is Feeling Feb. 12 2000
Format:Paperback
Rudy Galindo's autobiography ICEBREAKER is wonderful. Rudy's honest and vivid descriptions of his feelings make the reader cry and cheer right along with him. This book is an inspiration to anyone who feels that he/she is different. It is such an example of how anyone can reach his/her goal against all odds if they will work hard enough and never, never give up. Rudy Galindo is a true champion in every way -- not just on the ice -- and this book shows that beautifully.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Here's one bio that's never on thin ice Feb. 9 2000
Format:Paperback
I liked Galindo's sweetly naive depiction of himself as the "All-American kid," even if he does flirt with denial at times. After all, he grew up border-poor in a dysfunctional family with a self-destructive gay older brother (who was a terrible role model for gay Rudy), and Latino when that was still a social burden.
But "Icebreaker" is very much a story of hard-won triumph, and I really got the sense that Rudy's positive attitude got him over the hurdles and into the stardom he so richly deserves. (That, and loads of native talent: he was quite recently the best amateur male figure skater in the USA, no. 3 in the world.)
Rudy is a professional skater now, and he has some pointed opinions in this book about the perils of excessive juvenile skating competition for those who are willing to listen. Skating enthusiasts will enjoy the extensive technical vocabulary in this book; I just held on and enjoyed the ride. A very good read about a very admirable young man who is a role model in several different ways.
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3.0 out of 5 stars Greg was better. Feb. 6 2000
Format:Paperback
Something about this book just isn't very satisfying. When I saw the name Eric Marcus attatched to the book I was excited because I remembered that he helped Greg Louganis produce an excellent book. However, Rudy's book leaves a lot to be desired. The sroty seemes to focus more on his skating. True, skating was a vital part of his life, but it seemes that's all there is. This book would have been better if more time was spent on the events that happened between competitions.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Rudy! Rudy! Rudy! Jan. 27 2000
This warts-and-all autobiography traces figure-skater Galindo's life from early childhood to his turning pro. Not too long ago Rudy was the no. 1 male figure skater in the USA and no. 3 worldwide; the story of how he triumphed over a dysfunctional, near-povery-level background is inspiring and uplifting. Although gay, Rudy perpetually casts himself as the "All-American" kid. Time and again the conservative skating authorities told him his costumes were a bit too flamboyant, his wrists too slack to win the big-time points; to his credit Rudy ignored them and won anyway. Though some may find it a bit too emotional, "Icebreaker" is a winner, and anyone who still thinks gays lack grit would do well to check it out.
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5.0 out of 5 stars honest & inspiring May 27 1999
By A Customer
This is one of the few satisfying skating biographies. Rudy writes about his triumphs as well as his struggles both on and off the ice. He doesn't avoid issues or waste time on self-pity. If you enjoy his skating or are intrigued by his seemingly out-of-nowhere successes in 1996, you must read this book.
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