A Book That Would Make a Great Lifetime Channel Original Movie
Although Amanda Beard's memoir is ostensibly all about her journey as a young Olympian, her memoir is one of the more balanced ones we've seen written by an athlete. It doesn't just list her best times in the pool, or her greatest disappointment at not winning the gold: it goes deeply into her personal life, and the trials she faced there as well.
As a young girl, she was always extremely driven (have you met an Olympian that wasn't?). But when her mom unexpectedly moved out and divorced her father, making her home go from a family-filled place to an empty and lonely one, she started to seek out unhealthy ways of processing her emotions about the whole ordeal.
She started keeping busy to such an extreme level that she wouldn't even have time to think about how she felt and that started her on a lifetime path of avoidance and repression that would eventually catch up with her.
Through abusive relationships, struggling with bulimia and cutting herself to relieve some of her pent up emotions, Amanda continued to swim with some of the world's most elite athletes. And even though her professional status eventually allowed her to make a living doing the sport she loved (and also make a name for herself in the modeling world), she never stopped struggling with an innate insecurity about her appearance.
In the Water They Can't See You Cry is a super-compelling memoir. It's written in such a way that anyone could relate to the slightly awkward, but totally gorgeous woman she eventually became.
And the huge plus? It ends on a very positive note: that today she's happier than ever, healthier than ever, and is a mom to a little boy who is the absolute light of her life. Not too shabby.