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Read more about your favourite sports or sportsmen and women with a unique perspective on their careers from the comfort of your sofa with this range of recommended books. Whether you’re a football fan, rugby reveller or fishing follower, we have a great read for you!
No object encapsulates the subtle, mysterious richness of cricket as much as its most famous character, the cricket ball: the swinging, bouncing, spinning heart of the glorious game. Gary Cox tells us the life story of the ball in its many guises: new ball, old ball, live ball, dead ball, no-ball, lost ball, swing ball and dot ball. He untangles the complexities of spin bowling (with a little help from Shane Warne), the tricks and cheats involved in ball tampering (including a look at the 2018 Australian scandal) and explores the multi-coloured future of a rapidly changing game. A kaleidoscopic look at the ball through the lenses of everything from philosophy and science to history, politics and biography and the myriad facts and figures of the vast cricket universe, Cox brings you a brimming biography of this legendary leathern orb and the heroes, fools and villains it has created along the way.
Gavin Mortimer entertains with his diverting views of a great game through key objects in its history. And by using these key objects he is able to recount a history of how this sport began and the strange and meandering progress it made to prominence today. June 2013 Sports Book of the Month.Like for Like ReadingAnd God Created Cricket, Simon Hughes
The remarkable stories of 100 football artefacts that have shaped the game as we know it. From the inaugural red card to the ubiquitous mock Tudor mansion, each of the objects selected gives us an intimate glimpse of an unexpected truth behind footie mythology - and together they relate the larger history of the world's biggest and most-loved sport. Sue Baker's view... Gavin Mortimer entertains with his diverting views of a great game through key objects in its history. And by using these key objects he is able to recount a history of how this sport began and the strange and meandering progress it made to prominence today. Like for Like ReadingMy Father and Other Working Class Football Heroes, Gary Imlach
Geoffrey Boycott is one of the most outspoken and knowledgeable voices on cricket - but this book opens up a whole, new personal side to his life. Thirteen years ago, he received the diagnosis that tore his world apart: he had cancer of the tongue. Having faced down the fastest bowlers during his career as one of England's greatest-ever batsmen, he now had to take on an even more daunting foe. In this fascinating new book, his first autobiographical work for more than 15 years, Boycott not only relives his terrifying battle with cancer but also writes movingly about his long-time love Rachael, and their daughter Emma. He talks about his many other interests and friendships beyond cricket, with a great chapter on Brian Clough as well as revealing some surprising enthusiasms: Boycott and Katy Perry? But Boycott has devoted his life to cricket, and his insights on the game, its players and those who write and talk about it are never less than frank, revealing, entertaining and very honest. He assesses the modern generation of players: how does he rate England's prolific captain Alastair Cook? And is Kevin Pietersen a batting genius or a player who has frittered away his talent? His opinions come with the authority of someone with profound knowledge of and love for the sport. In commentary, he refers to the 'corridor of uncertainty' for a batsman - but with Geoffrey Boycott there is never any room for that, which is why this book is such a compelling and entertaining read.
Jack Johnson battled his way from obscurity to the top of the heavyweight ranks and in 1908 won the greatest prize in American sports - one that had always been the preserve of white boxers. At a time when whites ran everything in America, he took orders from no one and resolved to live as if colour did not exist.
Part coming-of-age story, part wilderness survival epic. I found The Rising of the Son to be an exciting read that took me by surprise and made me think. The prologue hints at something life-threatening having taken place. The tension was built, I was intrigued and so I read on. Told from multiple perspectives, Jonno and his dad, James, attempt to climb Mount Casharaqu without a guide. It doesn’t go quite to plan and they are put in a situation where they are struggling for survival and in need of rescue. The Rising of the Son looks at themes of identity, grief, loss, acceptance, love, masculinity, tourism and growing up. Putting it all in a list that seems like a lot, but the use of different perspectives, from Jonno and James in Peru to Macie and Mum back home, taxi drivers and villagers help this book deliver on a number of different levels in a way that seems authentic. I like Jonno, I was endeared by his confusion and struggle to work out where he was in life and what it means to grow up and be a man. Throughout it seemed that everyone was looking for, or missing something. It would be a good read for fans of literary fiction as well as those interested in survival stories as it looked past the tension of a hiking expedition gone wrong to comment on the human condition. I was intrigued by the “outside” perspectives of the airport worker, the taxi driver in Lemur, and the villagers. I think that the author effectively raises a valid point about the real impact of tourism and tourists, even in countries that rely on this industry. The author, Giles Dawnay has extensive experience working in the expedition travel industry and his knowledge from living and working alongside local people create a second side to this book that stops you in your tracks and makes you think deeply about how you travel. All this while also enjoying the story of the expedition. As an occasional and admittedly fairly ignorant tourist myself, I know these narratives will ensure that this multifaceted book will stay with me for many years to come. Charlotte Walker, A LoveReading Ambassador
Shortlisted for the William Hill Sports Book of the Year 2009. A wonderful memoir about the loneliest position on the football pitch. Graham Joyce looks back on his time spent in goal, from schoolboy success to adult ignominy. It might even inspire you to set off to the park with a ball - or you could stay in and read this highly enjoyable book instead!
Well, World Cup fever is on us once again and here Graham McColl takes a look at the possible how’s and why’s of certain teams winning the coveted cup. He looks at all the various factors that go in to making that winning team from tactics to pure luck and with all this in mind he looks at the qualifying teams for the 2010 competition.
Written with the co-operation of Rafael Benitez himself, this is an account of an extraordinary season for Liverpool football club. It includes a detailed account of the 2005 European Champions League Cup final in Istanbul, where the team managed to comeback from a 3-0 deficit to eventually win the trophy in a dramatic penalty shoot-out. Featuring interviews with the Liverpool players and backroom staff, this is the inside story of how they achieved this memorable victory.
Shortlisted for the Autobiography of the Year at the British Sports Book Awards 2015. Find out what motivates Guy Martin to confront the dangers of road racing, you’ll experience the heart-stopping moments when things go wrong and can contrast this adrenaline rush to the joys of winning. If you want to feel the speed and danger first hand – there’ll be nothing more high-powered this year! ~ Sue Baker Like for Like Reading That Near Death Thing: Inside the Most Dangerous Race in the World, Rick Broadbent Speed: How to Make Things Go Really Fast, Guy Martin
Find out what motivates Guy Martin to confront the dangers of road racing, you’ll experience the heart-stopping moments when things go wrong and can contrast this adrenaline rush to the joys of winning. If you want to feel the speed and danger first hand – there’ll be nothing more high-powered this year! Like for Like Reading That Near Death Thing: Inside the Most Dangerous Race in the World, Rick Broadbent Speed: How to Make Things Go Really Fast, Guy Martin
'The maddest 12 months of my life. The journey starts with an oddball race up an American mountain and ends with me checking myself out of hospital with a broken back. Again...' In this past year alone, Guy has raced the Isle of Man TT and finished on the podium; bike trekked through India; competed in solo 24-hour bicycles races; flown a stunt plane; broken a go-kart speed record down a French mountain and dusted himself off after a dramatic crash at the Dunrod 150 Superbike race. And he's done all this around his day job as a truck mechanic. But let Guy tell you about it himself: This book starts in a Transit, ends in a Transit, and in between I've raced a few pushbikes, raced a few motorbikes and got a fair few stories to tell you. (Spot on).
They are role models, heroes, spokespeople for major brands, they get millions in sponsorship, their personal lives are plastered over the gossip columns, they are at the top of their professions and love them or hate them, they’re all over our newspapers, TVs, PCs and radios. This section has everything the armchair enthusiast could wish for. Myth-busting biographies (Beware of the Dog by Brian Moore), detailed histories (A History of Football in 100 Objects by Gavin Mortimer), personal accounts of huge moments (Black White & Gold by Kelly Holmes), and atmospheric tributes to beloved games (A Last English Summer by Duncan Hamilton. This is the inside track on the lives, loves, losses and victories of some of the world’s most physically talented people, and the games they love to play.
Get into your favourite armchair, plump up the cushions, have a nice cup of tea and dive in. Just make sure you don’t pull a muscle!