About "Heart"- a rematch between awesome fighters,
This review is from: The Longshot (Paperback)
A few pages into the book this reader was reminded of John Huston's 1972 film "Fat City" starring Jeff Bridges as a lonely journeyman boxer without a manager, travelling by bus from fight to fight, living wherever the promoters decide to dump him.
This book's heroes are Cal, once an unbeatable, natural-born fighter and Riley, his manager for the past ten years. Cal engages in a mixed form of martial arts, whereby boxing, wrestling and the use of low and high kicks, and knees are allowed. Cal is portrayed as the best in this type of fighting until he lost four years ago on points from his two years-younger challenger Rivera, after three grueling rounds. Since then Rivera has knocked out every contender in a matter of seconds or minutes, netting 8-900.000 USD per fight. Since the points decision, Cal has lost on points from opponents he should have blown away. But he has never been knocked out.
The rematch with Rivera is scheduled in Tijuana, Mexico. Cal and Riley drive to the venue by car and are billeted together in a cheap room (USD 46 a night)in a shabby hotel and are advised to take their meals in the restaurant next door...
The authour never comments. Cal's and Riley's deep thoughts (often repeated) and their spoken words, always terse, push this curious and compelling book slowly forward. At three quarters into the book, readers still know little about Cal and Riley, except for some clues strewn around by the author. But by then they should really perk up and anticipate quantities of awesome drama... The best quarter of the book!
Ambition, rancour, doubt and fear are only a few of the feelings guiding the main protagonists in this debut novel written in the simple English fighters and their managers are expected to use. Deep book.