September 4, 2017

Book Review: Texas On Ice

Dallas Stars are leading the league as a first class organization in many ways off the ice.

One small example - they are bucking the trend on paperless season tickets. Instead, they pamper their season ticket holders with a box of gifts as well as the traditional tickets.

One of the gifts to surprise their clients this year is the new book Texas On Ice: Pro Strides To The Stars.

The book looks at the history of professional hockey in Texas from 1942 through to 1993 when the Dallas Stars arrived. They thoroughly have it all from the Houston Apollos to the Amarillo Wrangers to the Fort Worth Texans to Gordie Howe's Houston Aeros.

The book is beautifully laid out with amazing action photography, both in color and in black and white. The text compliments the photos nicely with text that recaptures the characters, the rivalries and the Texan hockey heroes of yesterday. A statistical package completes the book perfectly.

The book is a group effort funded by the Dallas Stars, though hockey book fans will recognize the executive director of the project: Jason Farris.

Mr. Farris was a rising hockey author who was funding personal projects that put big publishing houses to absolute shame. Then he disappeared. Sort of. He moved to Dallas in 2012 and became the Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer of the NHL Stars.

I should have been nicer to him when he was just a "nobody" in Vancouver, eh?

How does a hockey book author become EVP and COO of a NHL team? Well in his spare time he graduated from MIT's Sloan School of Management. That was after earning Political Science and Physics degrees here in Canada.

The dude is legit. The Dallas Stars - and the entire NHL - is better off for it.

Where does he find time to produce such a high quality hockey book like Texas On Ice? 

"You can accomplish a lot between the hours of midnight and 4am," he told me. I believe it!

This is actually the second book in the Texas On Ice series. Last year season ticket holders received the book Texas On Ice: Early Strides To Pro Hockey and the 1941-42 American Hockey Association Season.

The audience for this book is a lot more limited. Not a lot of people remember hockey in 1941-42, let alone the AHA which featured the Dallas Texans and the Fort Worth Rangers.

But every hockey fan should see this book, and then demand their favorite teams have such a wonderful remembrance of some significant events of the past. 

Farris' team bring back all the action and the memories exactly as they played out back then - through the clippings of the newspaper. It's such a unique presentation, where basically the past is brought back to life. I seriously love this book!

Relax, you do not have to buy Dallas Stars season tickets in order to get your hands on these books (though if you do after reading this blog, I hope Mr. Farris gives me a jersey or something). You can buy these books at the Dallas Stars team store or online at


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