The Comeback chronicles the life of one of America’s greatest athletes, from his roots in the windswept hills of Nevada's Washoe Valley to the heights of his global fame at the Tour de France. With a swift narrative drive and fierce attention to detail, Daniel de Visé reveals the dramatic, ultra-competitive inner world of a sport rarely glimpsed up close, and builds a compelling case for LeMond as its great American hero.
Coming June 5 from Atlantic Monthly Press
“The Comeback is an eye-popping ride, sweeping the reader through the extreme eccentricities of endurance cycling. But the heart of the story, the charismatic spirit and re-crowning of America’s authentic cycling champion Greg LeMond, is what makes you cheer through the pages.” -- Diana Nyad, author of Find a Way and the only person to swim between Cuba and the United States.
"Greg LeMond was Lance Armstrong before Lance Armstrong--and he won his three Tours de France WITHOUT cheating. The Comeback is the story of a true hero and his remarkable comeback to win arguably the most dramatic Tour de France in history. This is a must read if you believe in miracles." -- John Feinstein, bestselling author of Season on the Brink and The First Major.
“Once in a blue moon a sports book comes along appealing to a such a broad audience that it becomes a perennial favorite of neighborhood reading groups--Boys in the Boat and Seabiscuit being prime examples. Now make way for The Comeback by Daniel de Visé, a superbly well-crafted narrative. For devotees of the sport of bicycle racing, and for those with little knowledge of it, this book will satisfy in every way.” -- Paul Dickson, author of Bill Veeck and Leo Durocher.
“Greg LeMond is an American sporting hero whose story would surely be rejected by Hollywood as too fanciful. It includes taking on and beating the French at their own game, a near-fatal shooting, a career in apparently terminal decline, an extraordinary comeback, and a bitter feud with his successor. Remarkably, it’s all true, and The Comeback is the first book to document the full LeMond story in all its astonishing, scarcely credible detail.” -- Richard Moore, author of Slaying the Badger and host of The Cycling Podcast.
"Daniel de Visé has written a gripping account of what is widely considered to be the greatest finish in Tour de France history. His meticulously researched story of the professional and personal life of LeMond is enhanced by compelling descriptions of the cast of heroes and villains who built him up….. and tried unsuccessfully to tear him down." -- Bob Bowen, president of the U.S. Bicycling Hall of Fame.
"Daniel de Visé explores one of cycling’s epic duels, on the final day of the 1989 Tour de France when America’s Greg LeMond had recovered from a life-threatening shotgun blast to score a heroic come-from-behind triumph over France’s Laurent Fignon. In The Comeback, de Visé portrays the complex personalities of LeMond and Fignon in a narrative freighted with nuanced analyses, thorough research, and a narrative that rocks." -- Peter Joffre Nye, cycling historian, author of Hearts of Lions and The Fast Times of Albert Champion.
The first leg of my Andy and Don book tour is complete, and I am thrilled to report that the book drew newspaper coverage in nearly every city I visited! Reviews, feature articles, Q&A's - - there's been a little bit of everything, and every writer has come up with a new and inventive way to explore the historic friendship between Andy Griffith and Don Knotts.
On November 11th, I visited West Virginia University and the main public library in Morgantown, Don's birthplace. Ivy Smith Guiler marked the occasion with a pair of articles in the Morgantown Dominion-Post, one of which is preserved here. Sample: "In the newly released dual biography “Andy and Don,” author Daniel De Vise offers an intimate view into this friendship, which was as strong behind the scenes as it was on-screen. . . . In the book, De Vise’ chronicles of the lives of the men as they built their careers, giving readers insight into parts of their stories not often written about." Ivy also wrote a lovely profile of Don for the magazine NCWV Life, which appeared several days before my visit.
On November 13th, I visited CBS6 in Richmond to appear on Virginia This Morning, followed by a stop at the Fountain Bookstore. That visit drew a great column by Bill Lohmann in the Times-Dispatch. Bill termed the book "highly enjoyable" and added, "de Visé carries readers through the difficult childhoods that shaped each man, the emergence of their talents, the rocky starts to their careers and, of course, their remarkable success with “The Andy Griffith Show.”"
The next day, November 14th, I spoke at Norfolk's fabulous Slover Library. A few hours later, I gathered with some dear old friends at the downtown tavern FM for a one-off reunion of the Dropheads, our beloved South Florida rock 'n roll band of the 1990s and 2000s. The Virginian-Pilot, Virginia's largest newspaper, followed up with a lovely piece (on the book, not the band) a few days later from Jeff Hampton. Sample: "De Vise draws from interviews with people who knew them both in childhood and as professionals, and from his own experiences as Knotts’ brother-in-law."
November 15th took me to Durham, epicenter of the fabled Chapel Hill-Durham music scene and my home base for the next few days. I spoke at the main library there, a talk anticipated in a great piece by Cliff Bellamy in the Durham Herald-Sun.
Bright and early the next morning, November 16th, I visited Fox 46 News in Charlotte for a super-fun appearance on Good Day. The Charlotte Observer responded with not one but three articles (here, here and here), timed both to the book's release and to my upcoming appearance at the University City branch of the Charlotte library (see APPEARANCES page for details). From the official review: "Some non-fiction writers have a magic touch. They can lay out the dirt on a celebrity, but they do it in such an evenhanded, graceful way, they don’t track mud in the house. That’s former journalist Daniel de Vise writing about Andy Griffith and Don Knotts in Andy and Don..."
On November 17th, I visited the Bull's Head Bookshop on the storied campus of the University of North Carolina in Chapel Hill. Cate Asplaugh chronicled the event in the campus newspaper Daily Tarheel. Later that day, I appeared on WXII-12 television in Greensboro. From there, I headed to the Walkertown branch of the Winston-Salem library, an appearance marked by Tim Clodfelter in the Winston-Salem Journal.
On November 18th, I stopped by the gorgeous Pratt central library in Baltimore for a book talk there. On the 19th, I traveled to Frederick for a talk at the main library there, sponsored by the Curious Iguana Bookstore. The Frederick News-Post marked the occasion with an in-depth Q&A.
On the 21st, I spoke at my own local bookstore, the Barnes & Noble on Rockville Pike. For that stop, I handled the press myself - - with an Evite to neighbors and friends.
Next weekend, I return to Charlotte, followed by another five-day swing through lovely North Carolina! I'll see you on the road.