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Monday, Sept. 28, 2009

Phil Hanrahan Explores ‘Life After Favre’

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For many Wisconsinites, memories of football have always included Brett Favre as the heralded figure leading the green and gold at Lambeau Field. More than a decade after Green Bay’s Super Bowl win in 1997, car owners continue to proudly wave Packers championship flags atop their vehicles and display No. 4 stickers in rear windows. Yes, Packer fans have long equated the team with its immortal quarterback. So, like many of us, author Phil Hanrahan (Life After Favre) was captivated by the story, rumors and controversy surrounding Favre’s decision to un-retire, which ultimately led him to leave the team in the summer of 2008. That decision, which was fraught with indecision in itself, caused Hanrahan to write a book that captured the 2008 Packers season, the historic venue and traditions of Lambeau Field, and the dedicated Packer fans who follow the team. Instead of bemoaning the loss of a legend, Hanrahan, a Wisconsin native who has taught writing at Marquette University, decided to move to Green Bay and completely engross himself in the 2008 season, attending games at Lambeau, watching away-games at local taverns, and witnessing the emergence of new starting quarterback Aaron Rodgers.

Hanrahan’s new book, Life After Favre, records journeys and insights that tell the story of a single team and town, where cheeseheads proudly lift their foam heads high, people party in the parking lot in 20-degree weather and the Lambeau leap is a Sunday staple. In Life After Favre, the Packers’ 2008 season is presented with full energy and detail. The team, which would finish with a disappointing 6-10 record, still made excellent fodder for the story chronicled by Hanrahan. To kick off the 2009 season, and just in time for the upcoming Monday-night game between the Packers and the Favre-led Vikings, Hanrahan will debut his book Oct. 2 at 7 p.m. at Boswell Book Co.

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