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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A no-holds barred look at the career of one of the best ever, 23 May 2002
This review is from: Pure Dynamite: The Autobiography of Tom 'Dynamite Kid' Billington (Paperback)
Tom Billington changed the face of professional wrestling forever.
As a fan lucky enough to have grown up watching the British Bulldogs in the eighties, it must be said that the current crop of cruiserweights in most of the American promotions (yes, especially you guys, Bret Hart and Chris Benoit!)owe this man a debt that they will never be able to repay.
This book revisits Billington's great battles and his legendary disregard for his own well-being. Admittedly his drug/steroid use combined with the career-shortening bumps and death-defying manouvres combined to end up placing 'Dynamite' in a wheelchair, but the overall tone of this book is one of 'no regrets'.The legendary (and some might say cruel) jokes he pulled on his fellow wrestlers, unflatteringly blunt opinions of the superstars of the day that he worked with and the feud he never resolved with cousin Davey Boy Smith are all covered with little or no embellishment. Here is a man who clearly feels that he has no bridges left to burn.
I laughed uproariously at parts of this book. I shook my head at the physical ordeal Billington put himself through, and, dammit, I got all teary-eyed reminiscing about the classic battles, feuds and angles the Bulldogs enjoyed in their heyday.
This is a classic book, and to my mind, it stands without a doubt alongside Mick Foley's 'Have a Nice Day' as one of the greatest books ever written about Professional Wrestling.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Excellent look at a golden age., 4 April 2006
By 
adanield (Glasgow United Kingdom) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Pure Dynamite: The Autobiography of Tom 'Dynamite Kid' Billington (Paperback)
Pure Dynamite: The Autobiography of Tom 'Dynamite Kid' Billington gives a fascinating look at the life and career of one half of the British Bulldogs wrestling team in the early to late 1980's. Billington' gives a warts and all account of how he first became interested in wrestling up to the point where it ultimately left him broke and crippled. One of the best technical wrestlers to ever set foot inside a professional ring, as well as being a man who could actually handle himself outside of it, he took too many steriods in order to increase his physical size to fit in with the new breed of big men coming through in Japan and America. This steriod abuse combined with his high flying, high risk style brought him great dividends at the beginning when he became a top performer firstly in Japan and then in America with the WWF(WWE), but the final price for this success was the loss of one of his legs and the rest of his life in a wheelchair. Throughout the book, Billington does not pull any punches when talking about the people he has worked with. Most of the top names of that period are mentioned and some come out looking good and others not so good. Hulk Hogan, Bret and Owen Hart, Big Daddy, Giant Haystacks, The Ultimate Warrior, Randy Savage and Brutus Beefcake to name but a few. Billington is quite happy to say if he liked someone outside of the ring, but thought of them as hopeless inside it or vice versa. He is also quick to acknowledge that he only has himself to blame for his current predicament. He doesn't try to lay the blame at someone else's door and recognises that he and he alone caused his current physical problems. The break up of the Bulldogs partnership is covered at length and the bitterness between himself and the late Davey Boy Smith is also discussed. Billington tells us his stories as if you were talking to him in his own house. While this makes the book seem less formal, it doesn't help with the structure as he tends to occassionally drift off in the middle of a tale and then comes back to it a bit later on. Cited by many current wrestling stars as the best performer they have ever seen, Billington lays bare the rewards both monetary and in lifestyle that he reaped while a top name in the industry and also the pitfalls that awaited him, the breakup of his marriage, the squandering of his money and the steriod and drug abuse that have crippled him. If you are interested in the darker unseen side of the American Professional wrestling industry, then this book is a must read.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Pure Dynamite, 19 Jun. 2000
By A Customer
This review is from: Pure Dynamite: The Autobiography of Tom 'Dynamite Kid' Billington (Paperback)
If you grew up watching the WWF during the early 80's this book is for you. It is the autobiography of Tom Billington who left his job working the British wrestling circuit and headed to find fame and fortune in the Canadian Stampede federation. Eventually, he and his cousin Davey Boy Smith (The British Bulldog) end up in Vince McMahon's WWF and become the popular British Bulldogs tag team. In the federation he earned a lot of money and made a few wrong turns into drugs and steroids. But still, he was possibly the greatest performer in the world at that time. Billington details the relationship he had with many of the famous wrestlers from the 'Rock 'N' Wrestling' heyday and is brutally honest with his feelings. One of the down sides to the book is that when detailing his matches in the WWF,Stampede and Japan he refuses to break the hidden code of 'KAYFABE' and makes the matches appear as if they weren't worked. Despite this, Tom Billington lays the wrestling world straight out before us and proves that there is an even bigger power struggle behind the scenes just as there is on screen. The most moving part is when Tom returns home after this experience and realises that his wallet is filled with the same money he left with. This autobiography is PURE DYNAMITE!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Absolutely riveting!!!, 28 May 2001
This review is from: Pure Dynamite: The Autobiography of Tom 'Dynamite Kid' Billington (Paperback)
I remember starting to take an interest in wrestling around the time when the bulldogs were tag team champions and obviously dynamite kid was my favourite ( as Davey Boy was a big lazy wuss!!!) This book gave my a brilliant insight into the true world of professional wrestling and showed me what dynamite was thinking whilst myself and millions of others watched at home. The book is very similar to his wrestling style- hard hitting with no holds barred! The best book I have ever read in my life, thank you to Tom Billingon for giving us this work of art. If you have ever watched wrestling it is worth buying.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Old school at it's best, 28 Jan. 2004
If you are a life long fan of wrestling like me then you know that without Dynamite Kid we wouldn't have the likes of Jericho, Benoit and other wrestlers like that today. This is possibly the best wrestling auto biography I've ever read, if not the best biography. It's purely honest no b.s. He gives his views on everything from english wrestling to Stu Hartes wrestling promptions to the WWF and Vince McMahon and Japan. I was a big fan of dynamite kid before i read this book now I am an even bigger fan. Hear it from the original British Bulldog.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A must have fall all pro-wrestling fans, 28 Nov. 1999
This review is from: Pure Dynamite: The Autobiography of Tom 'Dynamite Kid' Billington (Paperback)
A bit of background: Tim Billington (aka The Dynamite Kid) is the most famous wrestler to ever come out of britain. He wrestled in Canada, USA, UK, Europe and Japan. He was trained by the legendary Hart Family. He is one of the most well repected wrestlers ever. He started to get a back injury at the peak of his career and kept on wrestling. He ended up in a wheelchair... This book is a real must have. You'll love every minute of it and really get to know the Dynamite Kid. Tom kept wrestling a real sport
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A great read for the ture wrestling fan!, 19 Mar. 2000
This review is from: Pure Dynamite: The Autobiography of Tom 'Dynamite Kid' Billington (Paperback)
The book Pure Dynamite by Tom Billington was among the best books Ive ever read. Tom tells stories from all around the globe. He brings you from Stampeed to Japan and back to the WWF. After reading both The Rock's book as well as Mick Foley I would have to rate this book as high as these titles. Tom tells a upbeat tale of life in the fast lane as a professional wrestler, then he talks about what happens when you step out of the light of the business. This book is a must for any real wrestling fan!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The best wrestling biography written to date, 4 April 2000
By A Customer
This review is from: Pure Dynamite: The Autobiography of Tom 'Dynamite Kid' Billington (Paperback)
After reading the autobiographies of Mick Foley and The Rock, I approached this book with interest, but without honestly believing that it would be surpass the works of 'The Great One' and 'The Insane One' . But, having read about the exploits of the 'Dynamite Kid', I can say with conviction that this is a far more enjoyable read. He is candid in his opinions of fellow colleagues, and has choice words to say about a host of wrestling legends, from Big Daddy to Bret "The Hitman" Hart. Free from the restraints that current WWF superstars have, he also explores the darker side of wrestling and does not shy away from the more undesirable aspects of the industry, in particular the drugs culture that prevailed throughout the Hogan-dominated 1980s. Emotional, funny and brutally honest, Billington has provided us with insights that even Foley's book fails to reveal. A must-buy for pro-wrestling fans, and a real education for those who are not.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Pure Dynamite says it all!, 17 Mar. 2000
By 
Amazon Customer "internalexile" (Ipswich, Suffolk United Kingdom) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Pure Dynamite: The Autobiography of Tom 'Dynamite Kid' Billington (Paperback)
Having read a few Wrestling books recently I have to say that Tommy's book is the most enjoyable and informed I've seen. His honesty is refreshing in a business renowned for greying over the truth. Maybe Bret Hart's recent complaints are a case of the truth hurting. If you want an insight into the dirty backstage workings of the Wrestling business look no further.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Candid and honest look back at Dynamite Kid's own career!, 13 Dec. 1999
By A Customer
This review is from: Pure Dynamite: The Autobiography of Tom 'Dynamite Kid' Billington (Paperback)
So many books have been written about the pro wrestling industry, but very few have been quality works. This year saw Governor Jesse Ventura release an autobiography ( which was vapid and laughable), Mankind wrote a bestseller (which is an excellent review of his own pro wrestling experiences), and now Tommy Billington's autobiography rates right up there with Mick Mankind Foley's work! Dynamite recalls his wrestling career in a subjective and candid manner; paints a clear picture of the harsh realities of the pro wrestling business, and he is candid enough to admit that some of his good friends made lousy wrestlers, and vice versa. This book is unlikely to become a bestseller like Mankind's, which is the literary public's loss. Strong and vivacious read; no homogenized humor or contrived narration in this work! Excellent piece of work here!
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Pure Dynamite: The Autobiography of Tom 'Dynamite Kid' Billington
Pure Dynamite: The Autobiography of Tom 'Dynamite Kid' Billington by Alison Coleman (Paperback - 30 Oct. 1999)
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