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Hitman: My Real Life in the Cartoon World of Wrestling Hardcover – 18 Dec 2007

4.7 out of 5 stars 145 customer reviews

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Hardcover, 18 Dec 2007
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Product details

  • Hardcover: 592 pages
  • Publisher: Random House USA Inc (18 Dec. 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0307355667
  • ISBN-13: 978-0307355669
  • Product Dimensions: 15.2 x 3.8 x 23.5 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (145 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 1,148,095 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Product description

Review

One of pro wrestling's biggest stars tells it like it was, with an obscene amount of detail.Few are better qualified than Hart to relate the story of how a family-friendly, locally oriented sport run by curmudgeonly promoters was steamrollered by the Hulk Hogan - fueled WWF marketing machine. Likely the most popular wrestler to ever come from Canada, the author grew up in Calgary, one of many sons of wrestling promoter Stu Hart, whose televised bouts were staples for decades. The Hart family basement passed into legend as "the dungeon," a place where Stu put top wrestlers through his grueling moves. The author's loving depiction of his cranky, painfully honest, perpetually broke father is a high point of this bloated memoir. Hart also vividly depicts the threadbare but thrilling family business he grew up in, with its road trips in crowded vans, meager pay, clownish ring antics and solid sense of brotherhood. But in 1983, hungry New York promoter Vince McMahon Jr. started televising his matches in other promoters' territories, necessitating a 1983 gathering in Las Vegas that Hart compares to "a meeting of Mafia dons protecting their turf." With the coming of the louder, meaner WWF, he laments, "something uniquely vaudevillian was lost forever." Nonetheless, it was only after Hart joined McMahon that he became an international star. McMahon's steroid-pumped musclemen were often not even wrestlers, the author admits, but since it was the only game in town he soldiered on, reaping millions in the process. Unfortunately, nearly two-thirds of the text focuses on Hart's fights with the untrustworthy McMahon and squabbles with siblings, rendering much of the book a tiresome bore.Excessive score settling smothers a pungent account of wrestling's changing of the guard. (Kirkus Reviews)

Book Description

The international bestseller by 'the living legend of wrestling' - The Sun --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Customer Reviews

4.7 out of 5 stars
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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
My husband loves it. Very small print though!
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Format: Paperback
I went into reading this book as a somewhat bret hart fan just looking to expand some knowledge on what happened with the controversies of his career after watching his " wrestling with shadows " documentary .
After starting reading I was drawn in and couldn't put the book down . Bret goes into every little detail about his childhood , upbringing , family , affairs, drug use as well as every aspect of his wrestling career and those big names we all know along the way .
I grew more of a fan of bret as the book progressed and then slowly started to dislike him with his overwhelming sense of self importance he portrays and then back to really liking him again when you realise he is just a man proud of what his family have taught him and the business he has had ingrained in him from a young age .
If you are a wrestling fan , a bret hart fan , a Shawn Michael's fan , a wwe fan or even if you are not this is a captivating, emotion filled , beautifully paced story of an extraordinary man and his extraordinary life . One of the few autobiographies I have read that paints a brutally honest ( if sometimes biased) picture of the person on the cover . 100% recommended
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
If you like Bret Hart or not,this is a compulsive read from the early days in Canada in his father's promotions to Japan and climbing the ladder in the then W.W,F. to the debacle of W.C.W. This is one of the best biographies I have read.Blisteringly honest with funny,sad and tragic memories.Do yourself a favour and buy this book.You will not be dissapointed.The original draft was double the size of the finished book. More to come perhaps?
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Format: Hardcover
While I was growing up in the eighties and early nineties Bret Hart was a real hero to me. I loved his style and his physique and even at that young age I think I appreciated his character as a hard worker who always gave his best and earned every win he got. However, due to my interest in wrestling gradually waning over the years it wasn't until recently that I saw the Hitman documentary "Wrestling With Shadows".

This was a real eye opener to me on the whole 'Montreal Screwjob' scenario that I had only really heard of in passing before, and as a result when I learned that Bret's open and honest autobiography was about to be released I ordered it straight away, and I must say that this book is fascinating.

Early on the book seems like an extremely honest but somewhat by-the-numbers wrestling autobiography, in which Bret describes starting out with his brothers and later Jim Neidhart, Dynamite Kid and Davey Boy Smith, and he is very open about the drugs and sex and real violence that followed them around throughout their early tours.

The antics described in much of the first half of the book will shock and quite possibly appall some readers, and certainly shattered a few of my childhood illusions, but Bret still comes across as a good guy trying to do his best in a world full of temptations (and I believe him). The real beauty of the chronicling of Bret's fledging career though comes in the foreshadowing of world famous events down the line, such as early encounters with Vince McMahon and Shawn Michaels, and Bret's lovingly written memories of his late brother Owen, all of which make sure that you can't help but keep reading.
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Format: Paperback
Should you peak behind the curtain? Should you let daylight in upon magic? Ask yourself these questions before reading Bret Hart's autobiography, because it will make you revise the nostalgic version of the World Wrestling Federation you grew up with. Remember they say you should never meet your heroes, you'll only be disappointed? Well, plenty of books will give you an insider's view of the strange world of pro wrestling, but few books will tarnish your opinion of several WWF superstars from the 1990s like this one will. Performers who refuse to let someone go over on them is one thing, but those who refuse to talk to young, terminally ill fans is quite another.

Bret certainly has a lot to say, the book weighs in at a hefty 553 pages, but the level of detail on events which occur over the 40 year span of the book make for an engrossing, page turning narrative, telling the story of the Hart brothers from kids wrestling in the Dungeon at Hart house to a family dominating WWF storylines for several years. Often, Bret points out that he was the real brains behind a lot of the Federations best spots, including the WrestleMania X ladder match, giving the ideas to McMahon to excitedly "scribble down in his little black book". This makes sense as Bret cut his teeth not only as a performer but also a booker in his father's Stampede Wrestling organisation. Wrestling is in the very blood he so often spilled in the name of entertainment.

Whilst Bret will refer starkly to the painkiller and steroid abuse he witnessed along the way, much is made of his own Achilles heel, beautiful women. Bret talks candidly of the breakdown of his marriages and of one night stands as his "addiction".
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