- Paul Kuharsky, ESPN Staff Writer
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NASHVILLE, Tenn. -- Stack up all the TV shows and DVDs some people watch and it can be pretty intimidating. That’s how Titans return man and running back Alvin Pearman, who’s not much of a TV or movie guy, looks at his thick volume of training camp reading.
Still, a copy of “War and Peace” in an NFL locker room is somewhat visually arresting.
Pearman started it a bit before training camp. He says he’s not a fast reader but doesn’t mind taking his time with a book that has well-developed plot and characters. He’s on page 422 of 1,350.
“You know what? It’s very enjoyable,” Pearman said after emerging from a dip in the Titans’ cold tub, book in hand. (One hand, honest.) "And that’s the bigger point. It is intimidating, that’s the one thing. But when you’re working your way through it, you can lose yourself in it.
“And now in training camp, when I am very much engrossed by the demands of football and everything that comes with it, it’s nice to have a little mental escape and historical fiction is a nice way.”
The perception of Leo Tolstoy’s 1869 epic as numbingly boring and its use as the standard for jokes about things that seem to last forever is way off, Pearman said.
“It’s a very fascinating book, so much character development you can’t help but identify with several of the main characters,” he said. “That’s the process that I love, I love character development -- within life and within books…
“It’s been on my reading list for a while. It just sort of happened that I started it a little bit before camp. And hopefully I’ll finish it before camp’s out.”
For those of you who want to join Pearman’s odyssey, I’m pretty sure this looks like the version Pearman’s reading. The link provides a nice summary, and a reasonable price, too.