on 26 June 2009
This is a wonderful book. Extremely well written, detailed and full of insight and anecdote about and surrounding what many regard as the greatest sporting upset ever.
What marks this book out from many others of the same ilk is how it manages to portray its two protagonists as human beings - as real people. This is a striking achievement on its own when we consider the brutality and base animalism at the heart of a 'sport' where the intention is to render an opponent physically defenceless by beating him about the head!
Refreshingly, this book doesn't focus on 'Iron' Mike Tyson, or on the myth of his one-time invincibility. The fully rounded treatment of James `Buster' Douglas is welcome, as it `fills in the blanks' for many people who know Douglas ONLY as the guy who beat Tyson. Even Tyson himself is portrayed sympathetically - but not in a fawning or sycophantic way. On the contrary, Tyson's various weaknesses and personal demons before and after 1991 are amply described.
One of the best books about boxing I have read. I would recommend this book for boxing fans and non fans alike.
on 9 December 2009
This is a fabulous in-depth look at one of the biggest upsets in sports history- James Buster Douglas' victory over the then seemingly unstoppable Mike Tyson. The author does a terrific job of chronicling the lives of both boxers, before and after the bout. Much has been said and written about this event before, but this was by far the best account I had come across. Even though you know what the outcome will be, you are still racing through the pages in anticipation of the inevitable knockout.
Joe Layden has done an absolutely sterling job here and I hope that he continues to write about the sport of boxing. Behind Donald McRae's brilliant Dark Trade, this is my favourite boxing book and it is easily the best I have read about Mike Tyson. Fortunately this is a fairly recent publication so there is a lot of information about the last years of both fighters careers. Simply put- this is an essential purchase for any boxing fan.
on 21 May 2010
... and I've hundreds in my collection. It gives a fascinating insight into the life of James 'Buster' Douglas who has largely been the forgotten man in heavyweight history in the last quarter of a century. Highly detailed and paced just about right, this book surpassed my expectations. I thought it may just give the obvious 'what any boxing fan knows' sort of a book. However, there is not one part of this book that I did not find interesting, in fact, it could be used as an excellent basis for a film if anyone cares to do it. Tyson is equally detailed but because so much is already known about Iron Mike, the interest for me was regarding James Douglas. This was a book that I could not put down and when I'm through with my current reads, I will return to this fantastic book. Highly recommended.
on 6 September 2009
Great book, well written and gives an in-depth account of the arguably greatest sporting upset in history, let alone boxing, a must have for any fan of boxing as it details the breakdown of the man who was dubbed unbeatable Mike Tyson and also the wasted talent of James "Buster" Douglas, who had the chance to become a great, but he will be forever written in the history books for this incredible upset.