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Against All Odds: The Most Amazing True Life Story You'll Ever Read

Against All Odds: The Most Amazing True Life Story You'll Ever Read [Kindle Edition]

Paul Connolly
4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (954 customer reviews)

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Product Description

Product Description

It had been years since I had seen any of the children with whom I had grown up. When I left the children's home, I promised myself that I would have nothing to do with them, I was sure that my only chance of living a good life would be to put the past behind me, even though that meant saying goodbye to some of the people I loved the most - as well as the ones I turned out that six of us had died, several by slow suicide in the form of heroin abuse, and at least two by faster means. When two police officers arrived out of the blue at Paul Connolly's door, he learned the shocking news that, out of the eight children with whom he shared a dormitory in care, only two were still alive. The revelation unearthed painful memories of a childhood that, until this point, Paul had tried desperately to put behind him. Abandoned at two weeks old, Paul came of age in the infamous St Leonards's Children's Home in East London. The children there were routinely abused, often over the course of many years. All were underfed and unloved and told that they would amount to nothing. Angry and frustrated, Paul channelled his rage into boxing - but when an accident shattered his ambition to turn professional, he found his true calling and became a successful trainer, even working as a consultant on the pilot of a top model's fitness video. Paul has finally found peace and fulfilment beyond anyhing he could have imagined all those years ago. He has found happiness with his wife and children and now helps to heal broken bodies, build confidence and transform lives - but he will never forget his past and the unnecessary victims of broken society...

Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 381 KB
  • Print Length: 292 pages
  • Page Numbers Source ISBN: 1844549054
  • Publisher: John Blake (1 Mar 2010)
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B00603Y6IS
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (954 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #2,290 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
91 of 91 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Funny yet poignant. 5 Jun 2011
By MarkY
This book made me laugh and made me cry in equal measure.

The pain that Paul Connolly must have experienced throughout his chilhood was palpable.

And although part of me was repulsed by the violence and the malevolence that Paul displayed, another understood and urged more of the same in order for him to gain some sort of recompense from the ills of a society that let adults abuse the positions of trust they were put in.

Although Paul was on the whole spared the fate that some of the children endured at least he has survived to tell his story and has since become successful in building a career and a family.

I kept questioning why these children were not listened to and how the system failed to protect them. I only hope that this book is read by all those now involved in protecting vulnerable children, the message of which should reverberate for some time.

This book was a superb read and one that I would thoroughly recommend albeit one that will take you on an emotional rollercoaster from heartbreak and anger, to laughter and elation.
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140 of 143 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great book! 31 Jan 2011
By SBond
A must read, couldn't put it down. I found the book to be gripping and at times really quite emotional. Its amazing how someone with such a bad start in life can turn things around and go on to be a successful businessman with great family values. It goes to show that not everyone with a bad start turns out the way you'd expect.

Paul is most definately an inspiration to everyone. To those, who like himself had a bad start but also to those that didn't that may not appreciate how lucky they were to have a nice childhood.

I would highly recommend this book and have already passed it onto many family and friends.
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119 of 122 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars stunning 1 Mar 2010
This is such a raw and honest book that it is at times difficult to read. I am still angry, not just because of the abuse suffered by the youngsters at St Leonards - but at the casual cruelty of the carers pocketing the housekeeping and feeding the children bread and margerine so that they were always hungry. I am far from happy that every crime committed in the course of the book was dealt with adequately. It is a book that really makes you think. It reads like a novel but the central events are a matter of public record and it comes accross as painfully honest. In the end it is a success story - not because of the celebrity side of the fitness training, but on a personal level the fact that despite the abuses of his childhood and the rage he talks about, Paul does finally manage to achieve a loving and happy family life.
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23 of 23 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Raw and honest - don't pass this by. 26 Nov 2011
By Slimjim
Format:Kindle Edition
This book won't win any literary prizes but it serves a higher purpose - it tells a truth. It's a story that needs to be told for many reasons. One is that it exposes the abuse in the system and reminds us that everyone, everywhere deserves to be treated decently and humanely. Another is that Paul deserves to tell his story, and to let people know that from the depths and despair of an apparently unchangeable situation you can summon strength, persevere and ultimately triumph. He is an example to all, a modern day hero, grounded in a personal humility who doesn't need to feed off the current fashion for celebrity status. Power to you, Paul.
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125 of 129 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A cliche I know but this is a must-read... 5 Mar 2010
Reading this book was at different times a painful, funny, emotional, poignant and ultimately uplifting experience.The resileince of the human spirit has never been better illustrated than within this book's pages.

It is also a damning indictment of the institutional 'care' system in post-war Britain and the establishment responsible for creating and running it.

I cannot recommend this book highly enough.
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57 of 59 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Real page turner 24 Feb 2010
By Jane Oz
Couldn't put it down. A true insight into the life of a brave young man who 'against all the odds' has turned out ok.
Its incredible how adults could treat children in this Dickenson way in the 1960's, a real eye opener.

How refreshing to read a book with references to `celebrities' that isn't a kiss and tell, Connelly hasn't in any way compromised his integrity.. He is an inspiration, to have had the hardships no child should ever endure and overcome the problems he did is just amazing.

I would thoroughly recommend this entertaining funny in parts book that had me shedding a few tears at the end.
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15 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars So you think you've got it bad? 18 Oct 2010
This is a truly remarkable story of ones man's need to survive, no matter what life has thrown at him. It makes you reassess your own life style and those things that the normal person may take for granted...that normality that we strive to achieve on a day to day basis, will never be enough to make up for this guys past!
This book draws you into Pauls world, it is written as it would be spoken and despite the anger and viciousness that Paul has been a major part of, you can not help but sense his vunerability all the way through, and you finish the book feeling like you have, in some part, been through it with him. It really hits you deep inside.
The bravery and trust it must have taken to put all of this onto paper is beyond comprehension and leaves with you with a deep sense of admiration for the author.
This is a book, that once started is very difficult to put down!
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars Four Stars
I thoroughly enjoyed this book, made very harrowing reading at times butone I wanted to to keep picking up.
Published 23 hours ago by valerie felce
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
love it
Published 3 days ago by mary
4.0 out of 5 stars Four Stars
Published 4 days ago by C. R. Mandall
5.0 out of 5 stars I have recommended this book to lots of friends Its a book ...
I have recommended this book to lots of friends Its a book i will read again. Now some of whats in the book is comming to light in the news. Read more
Published 6 days ago by Amazon Customer
5.0 out of 5 stars Well done Paul for making your life better
I think this book was brillent and well written and I am going to read it to my clients to show them there is a light at the end of the tunnel (Im a drug and Alcohol worker... Read more
Published 7 days ago by sarah mckoy
4.0 out of 5 stars Enthralling autobiography.
I enjoyed reading this book. it is well.written and shows how it is possible to improve your prospects despite everything and everyone dragging you down.
Published 8 days ago by Ann Mason-Warren
5.0 out of 5 stars excellent read
A fabulous read of someone who started life in a very grim way and turned his life wishes Paul Connolly for the future x
Published 10 days ago by syl
3.0 out of 5 stars Three Stars
Quite good but really repetitive.
Published 10 days ago by Maz
4.0 out of 5 stars Four Stars
I liked this book, good story, well written.
Published 11 days ago by T A Samson
5.0 out of 5 stars excellent
A really excellent book. Made even more amazing to think its true, and Paul lived and survived through it. Amazing
Published 12 days ago by Trish Lee
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Popular Highlights

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‘Look in the mirror, because if you don’t like what you see you need to change it because your kids will become you. If you have a road-rage incident, your kid will grow up to experience road rage; if you scream and shout, your kid will scream and shout. You want to look in the mirror and stop the behaviour you don’t want your kid to emulate.’ &quote;
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‘No Viet Cong ever called me nigger, and I’m not going to go and kill a yellow man because a white man tells me to.’ &quote;
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That dreadful understanding, of being utterly alone and unloved, shatters confidence and hope the way nothing else can. &quote;
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