Crossing the Line: The Outrageous Story of a Hockey Original
by: Derek Sanderson and Kevin Shea
From winning the Stanley Cup and being the highest paid athlete in the world to living on a park bench in New York City. The life of Derek Sanderson is an original that has a new twist every time you turn the page. Derek Sanderson was born on June 16 1946 to his mother, Caroline, and his father, Harold in Niagara Falls Ontario. His Father worked in a Kimberly-Clark factory so naturally the Sanderson’s were a working class family. Derek’s hockey career started at around the age of four after his mother read in a issue of Maclean’s magazine stated that being a hockey player was Canada’s most respected occupation. Derek’s father noticed from an early age that Derek had the desire and talent to be a hockey player, and at the age of nineteen Derek got the chance to play in his first National Hockey League (NHL) game in December of 1965 with the Boston Bruins.
Derek then went on to win two Stanley Cups with the Bruins. However as fast as the fame came for Derek it went and he soon entered the world of drugs and alcohol. In the latter part of his autobiography Derek explains his road to recovery.
This novel, without question has been one of the best biographical books that I have read, and maybe one of the best books I have read. The reason why I chose this novel is I have always enjoyed nonfiction stories more than I have fiction, as well as I have been involved with hockey since I was five years old so any novel that involves hockey is more than interesting for me. This book is a fairly easy read because of its compelling story and its ability to hook the reader into continuing. However some background knowledge of hockey is something that I would recommend. No background knowledge of hockey may hinder your ability to fully comprehend the book. This novel brings the reality of how people in the public eye can easily fall of tract and go into a miserable stint in their lives. Although reading this book can give people who are in similar situations such as Derek was, a chance at rehabilitation from their addictions and a more positive view to recovering from addictions. The authors should be applauded for how they wrote this book in such a positive way even though there are some points in the book that are dark. A nice feature in this book was that the authors added some pictures from Derek’s life that really enhanced your understanding of his background. If you like nonfiction and hockey without a doubt this is a must read.
Reviewed by E. H., Grade 11 Scona Student