Friday, November 12, 2010

BOXING FICTION!

BOXING FICTION!

IT HAS BEEN A WHILE SINCE I LAST CHECKED OUT WHAT’S NEW IN ONE OF MY FAVORITE SPORTS GENRES, BOXING FICTION, AND WAS SURPRISED TO FIND A COOL REPRINT AND A COUPLE OF EITHER JUST RELEASED OR SOON TO BE RELEASED TITLES . . .

THE BRUISER

JIM TULLY

INTRODUCTION BY PAUL J. BAUER AND MARK DAWIDZIAK

FOREWORD BY GERALD EARLY

KENT STATE UNIVERSITY PRESS / BLACK SQUIRREL BOOKS

When The Bruiser was first published in 1936, almost every reviewer praised Jim Tully’s gritty boxing novel for its authenticity—a hard-earned attribute. Twenty-eight years before the appearance of The Bruiser, Tully began a career in the ring, fighting regularly on the Ohio circuit. He knew what it felt like to step inside the ropes, hoping to beat another man senseless for the amusement of the crowd. Having won acclaim in the 1920s for such hard-boiled autobiographical novels as Beggars of Life and Circus Parade, Tully thus became both fighter and writer.

“It’s a pip of a story because it is written by a man who knows what he is writing about,” said sportswriter and Guys and Dolls author Damon Runyon. “He has some descriptions of ring fighting in it that literally smell of whizzing leather. He has put bone and sinew into it, and atmosphere and feeling.”

The Bruiser is the story of Shane Rory, a drifter who turns to boxing and works his way up the heavyweight ranks. Like Tully, Shane starts out as a road kid who takes up prizefighting. While The Bruiser is not an autobiographical work, it does draw heavily on Tully’s experiences of the road and ring. Rory is part Tully, but the boxers populating these briskly paced chapters are drawn from the many ring legends the writer counted among his friends: Jack Dempsey, Joe Gans, Stanley Ketchel, Gene Tunney, Frank Moran, and Johnny Kilbane, to name a few.

The book is dedicated to Dempsey, the Roaring Twenties heavyweight champion, who said, “If I still had the punch in the ring that Jim Tully packs in The Bruiser, I’d still be the heavyweight champion of the world today.”

More than just a riveting picture of life in the ring, The Bruiser is a portrait of an America that Jim Tully knew from the bottom up.

FOR MORE CLICK HERE

THE LONLIEST PLACE

ALEC WEEKS

A talented young boxer emerges from the wreckage of the Blitz and the Second World War: Jack Peters has a great natural ability, spotted early on by trainer Eddie Millighan, who takes him under his wing. Soon Eddie's whole family are drawn in to Jack's life, as Jack becomes as close to him as the son he never had.

But it gradually becomes apparent that Jack's unstoppable drive to win is masking another agenda - the burning desire for revenge. As Eddie dedicates himself to building Jack into a champion, will Jack find the peace of mind that has eluded him for so long? This action-packed tale is also a warm, human story of how wartime experiences shape a winner.

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STORMY PETREL

ALEC WEEKS

Eddie 'Boy' Walker is a boxer with a chance of the title. When his crooked manager - one Pablo Mesinne - asks him to throw his latest fight, Eddie and trainer Sydney West have other plans. After the fight they decide to lay low, somewhere beyond the reach of Pablo and the shadowy crime syndicate The Group. But when Eddie catches his fiancee with another man - one of Pablo's own henchmen no less - he sees red and the fighter in him is unleashed.

Thirteen years later Eddie is ready to start again. With his faithful dog Jessie by his side, he stumbles into the lives of Mike and Sue Shepherd, struggling farmers in the North of England. Together they show him the love and respect he hasn't known for so long. Over time, he is able to confess and relive his past - the attack, the arrest, the sentence, the time. And perhaps, just perhaps, a new future lies ahead; even - all things being equal - one last shot at the title . . .

The second novel by former BBC sports producer Alec Weeks (Match of the Day), Stormy Petrel is a tale of courage, failing, loyalty and second chances.

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THE FIXER

STEVE BUNCE

Ray Lester is a fixer in the boxing business. He makes fights happen. He builds a bridge and guides boxers across to the negotiating table. Ray Lester is good at his job. Then one morning a girl arrives at Ray's door and asks him for help finding her father, an old-school Vegas crooner called Eddie Lights.

Ray travels with his questions to Sin City, along with 30,000 other Brits with their Union Jacks on the way to watch Hatton take on Mayweather. But before long, the boys in leather jackets from back east on his tail and Ray finds himself embroiled in a murderous plot. So begins a journey into the murky world of deals, fights and fighters.

It is a world beyond the glitz, glamour and glory, where men like Ray Lester operate. It is a world where the fixer is king.

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WAITING FOR CARVER BOYD!

THOMAS HAUSER

Waiting For Carver Boyd is Thomas Hauser's most riveting work to date. It tells the tale of a young fighter who rises from obscurity to challenge for the most coveted prize in sports, the undisputed heavyweight championship of the world. It's a special book that moves back and forth with increasing intensity between the bright lights and shadows of professional sports.

It's about hope, anger, loss and belief in oneself. It's a love story with a special twist. On occasion, a unique book breaks with traditional thinking and demands attention.

Waiting For Carver Boyd is different from any novel you've ever read. Spend an hour with it. You won't be disappointed. The experience will stay with you forever.

FOR MORE CLICK HERE

1 comment:

David Cranmer said...

That image of The Bruiser reminds me of...