- Paperback: 328 pages
- Publisher: ECW PRESS (14 May 2015)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 1770411240
- ISBN-13: 978-1770411241
- Product Dimensions: 15 x 1.8 x 22.6 cm
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 622,602 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
Capitol Revolution Paperback – 14 May 2015
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About the Author
Tim Hornbaker is the author of three nonfiction books, including "National Wrestling Alliance: The Untold Story of the Monopoly that Strangled Pro Wrestling" (ECW, 2007). He lives in South Florida with his wife, Jodi.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
With that out of the way, I would like to say that this book is an excellent resource for pro wrestling historians. The book really picks up momentum after the halfway mark and tells the story of the WWWF in the pre titan sports days. This book must have been a labor of love for the author and I commend and thank him for it.
I do have one additional quibble- the information about Jess McMahon was fascinating but it seems to get lost in the author setting the context for that time period. It almost seemed like Jess had to be pushed as if he was more prominent than he was to make the premise of the book work.
I'd love to see more historical pieces by this author. I did read his NWA book, which was great as well.
This book starts in the 1910's and follows the double-crosses, power plays and underhanded tactics that made the industry what we know it as today. It follows a handful of promoters (Including but not limited to the McMahon lineage) representing different regions of the country (Primarily New York, Boston, Chicago and LA) through the decades as they clash with their local athletic commissions, prima-donna champions, the waxing and waning of public interest in their "sport", the federal government, TV networks, and most importantly, each other. The shifting alliances and double-dealing among promoters in every decade seems to be a constant, and one can draw several parallels to the famous Monday Night War era of the WWE/WCW/ECW.
I wish I could give this book a perfect 5 star review. I am grateful everything I learned in this book and will probably re-read it at least once. Unfortunately, in my opinion, this book neglects to show the personalities of wrestlers and promoters that are portrayed in it. I know more about Jess McMahon and Vincent J McMahon's tactics and business dealings than I did before reading this book, but I cannot say I learned much at all about the men themselves. The same goes for many of the wrestlers, who weave in and out of the story abruptly without much more in the way of description than where they were from, their age, and a detail or two about their wrestling style.
Obviously Mr. Hornbaker should be praised for writing this book, which is wonderful resource for anyone interested in professional wrestling. But this is a book about professional wrestling, which is known for it's larger-than-life characters in and out of the ring and I yearned for more information on men like Ed "Strangler" Lewis, Buddy Rogers and Lou Thesz. I learned so much about what they did, but I did not learn about who they were and for me that keeps this book from perfection.
Also, as other reviewers have noted, I do not understand why Hulk Hogan is on the cover (Marketing I assume). He is mentioned maybe twice at the very end of the book.
It should be noted that very little is said about the business which emerged under Vincent Kennedy McMahon with all of his WrestleMania programs and his rush to push professional wrestling from its territorial area approach. Personally, I prefer to see the territorial area wrestling because it offers more competition and the companies learn much from their competitors to continue improving their shows. However, this is just my opinion. I am hopeful that the author Tim Hornbaker, who is a very good writer and researcher, carries this story to a sequel book focusing on the antics of the McMahon family under the leadership of Vincent K. McMahon and their impact on professional wrestling. Certainly, their 1990s competition with WCW and ECW and the eventual demise of those two companies would make a compelling story in such a sequel. In addition, it would be nice to learn about the impact of steroid on the business and what happened in the court rooms to deal with those kinds of abuses involving the WWE and their wrestlers. I think the McMahon story should definitely be continued.
Again, it needs to be said that I really enjoyed the story of those earlier years of this very influential regime. It is just that I found it a bit jarring to find it ended at the point when Vincent K. McMahon was beginning to flex his muscles to take on the wrestling business which was passed on to him from his father.
GOT INSIGHT INTO THE TIMES THE GARDEN WENT DARK MORE DETAILS ON THE BEHIND THE SCENES STUFF ON BUDDY ROGERS, THE BUSINESS END, I HAVE NEVER MET THE MCMAHONS BUT I WOULD LIKE TO RECOGNIZE JESS VINCE SR AND VINCE JR THEY HAVE GREAT DNA THEY ARE STREET SMART, HARD SMART WORKING , TOOK RISKS BOUNCED BACK ETC AMAZING PEOPLE. FOR THOSE WHO HAVE NEVER HAD A BUSINESS THE SAYING GOES THE BUSINESS OWNS YOU THE MCMAHONS FACED ALL THE EXTERNAL FORCES IRS GOVERNMENT COMPETITION A CHANGING AUDIENCE INDUSTRY PLUS DEALING WITH THE INTERNAL FORCES OF WHO IS TRYING TO STEAL POLITICS ETC. JUST AS THE NAME CHANGED FROM WWWF TO WW TO WWE LIKE A CHAMELON TIM HORNBAKER HIT A HOMERUN NEXT BOOK BUDDY ROGERS =HERMAN DUTCH RHODE FROM JERSEY PLEASE