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The Complete Book of the Olympics [Paperback]

David Wallechinsky , Jaime Loucky
4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (24 customer reviews)
RRP: £25.00
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Book Description

1 April 2012 Complete Book of the Olympics

The Complete Book of the Olympics is just that – the pre-eminent point of reference for sports enthusiasts and journalists alike, and the essential guide to the London games. At 1300 large-format, closely typeset pages, the tome is a prodigious and compendious work of reference. But it is also an amazingly readable book, for in the course of recording every single modern Olympic final at every single Games, it reveals the strange, the memorable, and the frankly unbelievable. Who knew that croquet or tug of war were once Olympic sports, or that a 72-year-old once won a silver medal for target shooting? This new edition is updated to include every final’s result (to the first eight places) for every event at the Beijing 2008 Olympics, as well as a comprehensive preview of the London 2012 games.

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The Complete Book of the Olympics + London 2012 Olympic Games: The Greatest Show on Earth: An official day-by-day photographic celebration + London 2012 Olympic Games: An Official London 2012 Games Publication
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Product details

  • Paperback: 1300 pages
  • Publisher: Aurum Press Ltd; 2012 Edition edition (1 April 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1845136950
  • ISBN-13: 978-1845136956
  • Product Dimensions: 23.1 x 18.3 x 6.4 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (24 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 180,761 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description


'Excellent and exhaustive new book'

(Sport magazine )

‘Anecdote-rich, as well as stats heavy…each edition is always fresh and fascinating’

(Sportsjournalists.co.uk )

'Definitive guide to the past Olympics…there are thousands of interesting stories to read here…if you are interested in the history of the Olympics, then this is the book for you.’

(Olympicsblog.co.uk )

About the Author

David Wallechinsky is a renowned Olympic historian, NBC radio commentator and author of several reference books, including the bestselling The Book of Lists and the People’s Almanac Presents the 20th Century. His work has appeared in such publications as the New York Times Magazine and Parade, and he has guested on Late Night with David Letterman, Nightline, and PBS’ News Hour with Jim Lehrer. He is the founder editor-in-chief of the political website AllGov.com. Wallechinsky is also the vice-president of the International Society of Olympic Historians and recipient of the Olympic Order of the International Olympic Committee.

Jaime Loucky has worked on several editions of the Complete Book of the Olympics, both Summer and Winter editions. His articles have appeared in a number of magazines and academic journals including the Encyclopaedia of Contemporary American Immigration.

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Customer Reviews

4.8 out of 5 stars
4.8 out of 5 stars
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Essential reading for London 2012 25 May 2012
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
In my view this is without doubt this is the greatest book on the Olympic Games ever written, packed with antidotes about the competitors and ever result for all the events of every summer Olympics since 1896. It's a book that you can just browse at random, just open at any page and there will be interesting facts about a sport you may, or may not, have ever taken an interest in. I got my first copy in 2000 in time for the Sydney Olympics and having updated it by hand over the last three games decided it was time for the latest version ready for London 2012 and was not disappointed. This book will be essential reading for us `armchair' experts over the coming months. Brilliant!
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars For anoraks and sports fans 12 May 2012
By Boris
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Sheer brilliance, packed full of facts about the Olympics, but filled with juicy anecdotes to portray the human side of the Olympics and how times have changed over the years. No sporting bookshelf should be without it - it is the bible of the Olympics.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A briiliant reference book 16 May 2012
In sort it's a who won what at the nodern olympics since it started in 1896. It shows you all the medal winners and usually all the finalists / top 4 finishers and if it can the finishing time or score. It doesn't just do the main events or even just the ones at the current olympics it gives every single sport and disipline in that sport including the discontuned sports and events. The book gives a bit of information on the history of the sport in the olympics and tries to comment on every medal event (but doesn't always happen).
Also included in the book is a Table off which country has won most medals overall and at each games. As well as a rundown on each games including the 1906 games thats not an official games.
It's a well put together and is very complete. So if you are into your sports refernce books then this a must buy. If you want to know what happened at any of the olympic gamed then this is well worth getting.
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26 of 29 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Complete Book of the Olympics 22 May 2004
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
For many years David Wallechinsky has produced his quadrennial publication in the months prior to each summer Olympic Games. For anybody seriously interested in the Games it is quite simply invaluable. The 2004 edition - more than 200 pages longer than the 2000 version - contains comprehensive results for every summer Olympic final since 1896, including discontinued events, medal tables for each Games, and tables of Olympic trivia (most medals, oldest and youngest medallists etc). As if this wasn't enough, there is also a brief history of the Games (ancient and modern), articles about issues facing the Games (e.g. drugs and corruption) and, perhaps most interestingly of all, scores of fascinating anecdotes about Olympic competitors and controversies at the Games. Do you know which American swimmer was wined and dined by the Nazis after being expelled from her team for bad behaviour? Or which woman has won 18 Olympic medals? Mr Wallechinsky tells their stories and many, many, many more.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
The quality of the material is as good as previous editions I have.
The title '2012 Edition' is, however, is seriously misleading. It should have been made clear that coverage stops at the 2008 Games.
The front cover does say in smallish print, ' ... from 116 years of Olympic History....since 1896', but that fact cannot be known from e.g. an internet list of books.
(Admittedly, the chance of every 2012 event having been described and printed by the time I purchased the book in early October is highly remote - unless one believes in fairies!)
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Not just for anoraks ... 13 Jun 2012
By Peter Biddlecombe VINE VOICE
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
All the facts you could reasonably expect are there, but so are many stories about the champions and some of the also-rans. I get a new copy every 2 or 3 Olympics and would put this right at the top of a list of books that anyone interested in sport should have.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Complete book of the Olympics 2 Jun 2012
By panda
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Once again an excellent reference for the Olympics. Each sport easily found. This will replace the 2000 edition which has been well read. We are now all set for the 2012 London Olympics
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A champion book 17 Nov 2000
By A Customer
If, like me, you love the Olympic Games - I've been suffering withdrawal symptoms since the closing ceremony - this book is a must for you. Not only do you get the top eight finishers in every modern Olympic event from the first Games in 1896 up to Altanta 1996, you get thousands of the stories behind the events. Wallechinsky's tales of the winners - and plenty of the unlucky losers too - from a century of Olympics make fascinating reading. Harold Abrahams and Eric Liddell, Jesse Owens, Mark Spitz, the all-conquering (chemically enhanced) East German female swimmers of 1976 and 1980, Daley Thompson, Mary Decker's fateful collision with Zola Budd, the disgrace of Ben Johnson - their stories are all told, as are those of unsung athletes who embody the spirit of 'not for the winning but the taking part'. Did you know that croquet, golf and rugby were once Olympic sports? - It's true - read all about it here. The ugly face of Olympic politics gets a thorough examination too - Hitler's attempt to use the 1936 games for propaganda purposes, the Black Power demonstrators of 1968, the boycotts that blighted three successive Games. Wallechinsky tackles all these issues head on, plus the growing problem of drugs and the notorious corruption within the IOC that came to light a couple of years back. If it's about the Olympics, it's in this book.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars The complete Olympic Games
If this is the only Olympic work in your bookcase: don't worry, you are very well informed about the history and the results of the Olympic Games. Read more
Published 2 months ago by R. D. Paauw
3.0 out of 5 stars BEWARE
This book does not contain the 2012 Olympics. It stops at Beijing. Other than that it is what it says.
Published 6 months ago by gardening L
5.0 out of 5 stars Book review
This was an awesome present for a young man who wants to be an international sports journalist. He's on his way!
Published 9 months ago by L. J. McQuillin
5.0 out of 5 stars BOOK OF THE OLYMPICS
Very good book, best I have seen. The only real disappointment with it is they don't give you the results of the 2012 Olympics, altho they have a picture of usain bolt on the... Read more
Published 12 months ago by Ivor Lowe
5.0 out of 5 stars The sports bible
It's a really impressive publication for all your information and stories that can make anyone an expert on the Olympics. A key item in the library of any sports fan.
Published 15 months ago by Rodrigo Huk
5.0 out of 5 stars very helpful guide
it was very informative book for the Olympics 2012. It has great in-depth information about the events and I highly recommend it
Published 19 months ago by Hello its me
As a keen athletics fan I have purchased the last three editions of this book.
I remember the 1948 olympics and two runners in those games made me take an active part in... Read more
Published 20 months ago by El Jay
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent resource
An excellent book that has just about everything you need to know about the Summer Olympics. Not only does it contain the essential facts but also the interesting stories behind... Read more
Published on 28 Aug 2012 by Paul Wellings
5.0 out of 5 stars the complete book of the olympics 2012
I became addicted to the Olympics when watching the 1960 Rome games aged 11. I can really add nothing to what previous reviewers have said, merely to say that I hope we do not have... Read more
Published on 25 Aug 2012 by Anonymous
5.0 out of 5 stars A must for sports enthusiasts
The Olympics have been and gone. That's no reason to discard this book. Such a great book to have close by, comparing times from previous games with those attained in 2012. Read more
Published on 17 Aug 2012 by D. Williams
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