Maria Kaj has spent over 20 Olympiads as a self-proclaimed Olympics junkie, always ready to debate the finer points of whether Jackie Joyner-Kersee or Michael Phelps has done more for sport, in her weekly blog and on social media. She also writes about history, entertainment, and the foibles of the human condition. Retired from the corporate world, she is enthusiastic that she no longer must write everything in bullet points. Outside the Rio Spotlight is her first book. Visit the blog at kajmeister.com.
In the 2016 Olympics, 12 athletes—record-breakers, pioneers, and all-around thrilling competitors—were overlooked in the prime-time TV coverage. Outside the Rio Spotlight tells tales of courage and American excellence at its peak, with stories about those who contest in the lesser-known sports like judo, rowing, BMX, and fencing. These athletes did it for love of the sport alone. (120,000 words)