Soon after best-selling author Rick Reilly started writing a weekly back-page column for Sports Illustrated, he tackled the subject of cheerleading. Reilly wrote: "I don't hate cheerleading just because it's as safe as porcupine juggling. I hate it because it's dumb. Cheerleaders have no more impact on the game than the night janitorial staff. Exactly what does a girl get out of cheerleading, anyway, besides a circle skirt and a tight sweater?" These sentiments didn't exactly endear him to the pom-pom set, who went after the 11-time National Sportswriter of the Year with a vicious letter-writing campaign. That's the story behind the title of Reilly's latest collection of columns, Hate Mail from Cheerleaders, now releasing as a paperback. Having handpicked 100 of his favorite pieces from the last seven years, Reilly revisits his subjects by adding postscripts to his work. It's obvious why the book's first release as a hardcover in the spring of 2007 reached the New York Times bestseller list for eight consecutive weeks: this collection brings together the best work by the best columnist in the business.
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