More often than not, when talking to a former Darien grad playing sports at the next level, catching up is a matter of where they are in their athletic careers.

Jack Book, who graduated Darien in 2016, is the exception.

After leaving Darien, Book went on to play lacrosse at the University of Pennsylvania. While there however, an injury derailed his playing career to the point where he was left the sport.

After coaching the past three summers with the Connecticut Chargers travel team for Darien coach Jeff Brameier, Book made the jump this past season to the high school ranks—heading the Darien freshman program.

“It was an awesome group of kids,” Book said. “They came in with a lot of talent and coach B and myself had to do some work getting their attitudes right. They’re a total group of characters, they’re going to be fun to watch.”

And, as is tradition with the Darien lacrosse program, they won.

“We started off losing the first game of the year and really put it in gear and got them on the right page and in the right mindset,” Book said. “And we rolled through the rest of the season without a loss.”

That included traveling down to New Jersey for the annual Don Bosco tournament, where Darien left with the crown.

“It’s a big deal,” Book said of the win. “It’s not a guarantee Darien goes down and wins. We’ve been doing it for ten years now and only four or five teams that actually won. We were in a three-year drought and we went down this year and they wanted it. It was a cool thing to see.”

Book’s coaching prowess isn’t an accident, in addition to his experience with the Chargers, he had plenty of role models to look up to, as well as the culture of the athletic program at the high school.

“My dad is sort of one of the founding fathers of Darien Youth Lacrosse and Coach B has always been a huge mentor of mine,” Book said. “…it’s cool to pay it back. It goes for all sports at Darien, it’s about that alumni paying it forward.”

Book still has his whole adult life in front of him, and isn’t sure where coaching might take him, but he already has a plan of what he wants to accomplish in that vein.

“I’m figuring out what I want to do with my life and my career and that’s very important in these next couple years,” Book said. “But when I’m older further down the road, I want to give my kids the same experience and love for sport and competition. I don’t know if I would take it to the level of Coach B, he’s an icon at this point, and I don’t know if I would ever coach for a high school program, but whether its organizing a youth program or coaching absolutely, that’s one of the things I’m passionate most about.”

Lacrosse is just a part of Book’s story.

“I decided I was going to take a gap year to pursue my passion,” Book said. “I wasn’t really loving the classes I was taking, it wasn’t the school or the course load, it was the courses themselves. So, I’m taking a gap year and working on getting signed for music.”

Book is a talented singer, his first single “Down and Under” is out now, and his music can be found on Linktree under the name @Jackbookmusic.

Singing is just the tip of the iceberg for the multi-talented Book. While at Darien, Book produced videos for most of the athletic programs around the school around under the production moniker Garden Gate Productions.

He wants to be able to blend his love for music and production into crafting a future for himself.

“I definitely want to be in entertainment and when I’m older I want to have an entertainment company and inspire people,” Book said. “I want to work with artists and people who are already established and help them with creating content constantly and innovating.”

Book has big dreams, but he’s level-headed, and knows it will take time and plenty of work to reach them.

“Before I get there, my dream is to be a musician,” Book said. “I look at a guy like Chance the Rapper who is doing it independent, he does his own videos and content. I’m not a rapper, but I want to make my music and production and all that stuff because I produce all my own music and I sing and I want to do that and mix it.

“I want to be making my own music videos and taking my own pictures and running my own social events and going on tour and running my own shows. That’s the dream and that’s what I’m chasing right now.” @reportedbytheAP