The story that inspired one of Hollywood’s most memorable movies – The Blind Side – now has a connection to Tallahassee. The film’s centerpiece, Michael Oher, will release his autobiography – I Beat the Odds – with local, four-time New-York Times bestselling author Don Yaeger, Tuesday, Feb. 8.
Last year’s Oscar-nominated film chronicled Oher’s journey from homelessness to NFL stardom. But according to Yaeger, the movie missed some crucial elements.
“Because the movie basically began with his ‘rescue,’ it failed to convey the enormity of the nightmare that was his childhood,” Yaeger said. “He was one of 13 children born to a drug-addicted mother who raised him in one of America’s most dangerous housing projects.”
This is the first time Oher will share his story in his own words, in his own voice, revealing details never released before.
“I Beat the Odds is the real deal,” Oher said. “There’s no sensationalism; no Hollywood angle this time around.”
Growing up in the Memphis inner-city ghetto, Oher set goals for himself to change his future and break out of the projects. Football would become his ticket to a better life. Oher contributes much of his success to his adoptive family, the Touhys, and other influential people in his inner circle. In the book, he emphasizes the need to seek out positive role models who share the same core values.
“Michael is the perfect example of someone who worked hard to achieve the American dream,” Yaeger said. “I think readers will really relate to his story and be inspired to do something great.”
The first 100 people to order will receive the book autographed by Oher and personalized by Yaeger.