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If They Only Knew Hardcover – 5 Feb 2001
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The name list compiled by the WWF creative department included Teeva Gweeve, Phalan, Sheera, Venus, and Tigress. Teeva Gweeve?! What is that all about? Sounds like the name of a female pig in a cartoon. Phalan? Sheera? Why didn't they just come out and call me Butch Woman?
In the end, of course, they settled on the name Chyna--The 9th Wonder of the World--and not-so-little Joanie Laurer took a giant stride on her way to being the biggest, baddest, silicone-enhanced butt-buster in wrestling history.
Brutally candid -- and, those of a tender disposition should note, not shy of employing the sort of language that they just don't like to encourage on The Tweenies -- Chyna bares all in a non-stop expose of what it really took to be the first woman to hold the WWF Intercontinental Belt. It's a classic, sometimes harrowing story of one woman's battle to define her own identity in the face of overbearing, manipulative parents and a world which has firm ideas about how 'little girls' should look and behave.
Chyna lifts the lid off the WWF, taking no prisoners in her assessments of the biggest names -- including The Rock and Stone Cold Steve Austin -- the backstage bust-ups and what happens when things go wrong for real in the ring.
A genuinely funny, perceptive account of the game by one of its defining performers, lavishly illustrated with dozens of never-seen-before private photos and all-out action shots of the woman at work -- If Only They Knew is simply a must-read for WWF fans. --Alex Hankin
Yes, the spelling is correct and the Internet even has a shrine to her because Chyna (born Joanie Laurer) is one big, strong woman - with a figure fit for Playboy - and the first to infiltrate the male-dominated world of professional wrestling. Although under wraps (because of a serial deal), her autobiography is bound to fascinate because of her alien and enigmatic career. She came from a dysfunctional family, with an alcoholic father and a mother who eventually married five times. She had teen-age bulimia yet was a brilliant scholar. Despite such academic promise she tried all things physical, including belly dancing, because she yearned for athletics and entertainment. Success eventually came in wrestling - training with killer Kowalski and taking on men at their sport. Here are the screw-ups and confrontations, the insults and humiliations, the bodybuilding and fighting back. Chyna, no holds barred.See all Product description
Top customer reviews
There are a lot of shocking revelations in this book and it's makes you wonder how Joanie managed to carry herself through it all.
Her storytelling style is very much in the vein of Mick Foley (for those of you who have read "Have A Nice day") and her irreverant humour shines throughout.
However, I do have two slight moans :
1) The language! For a woman who comes across as thoughtful, polite and intelligent in her television and magazine interviews, it makes you wonder if this is the same person who wrote this book as it's chock full with gratuitous profanity. I wonder if her writing partner was Roy "Chubby" Brown...
2) Joanie doesn't actually tell everything. There are some chapters of her life that she either completely ignores or relegates to a passing mention - for example, her relationship with Gerry Blias, the man who taught her all she knew about bodybuilding and nutrition. Also, there is no mention of Owen Hart's tragic death (unlike Foley and The Rock's books) or the Montreal Screwjob, both of which happened during her tenure in the WWF.
I do feel though, that this book is somewhat "rushed", which is probably why so much is missing. This is evident by the fact that it only takes a couple of hours to read.
Having said that though, this is a great read and you are left with a different appreciation for Joanie Laurer. Oh and there are some great photos too.
I would recommend this to any Chyna fan, and I don't think it would hurt for any non-Chyna fans to read this - if they could put their prejudice against Chyna aside for a moment.
This book goes through Chyna's life up until the present day in fabulous detail. It examines the choices she made and how exactly she has come to be where she is.
Reading about any pro-wrestler in this way gives you, I think, newfound respect for who they are and what they do. Mick Foley's book is an excellent example of this, and thankfully Joanie Laurer's is too; touching, heartfelt and amusing throughout.
Chyna has been through many battles, with both female and male opponents. Find out how she feels about people treating her as if she was a man and how her personal life relates to her WWF career.
Mick Foley's book was awesome, the Rock's was shallow but this is, at times, nasty.
Otherwise chyna talks of her career and basically everythink thats happened to her.
Overall a good book and is a definite buy for any true fan.
For any sad ?@!% whos intreasted she goes into a lot of detail about her clevrage
It is the same as the hard back version, very hard to put down.
It tells the story of Chyna, real name Joanie, as she struggled to win her dreams, and overcome and male sexism.
This book is definately one to choose. I ended up reading it in one day because i couldn't put it down!
p.s chyna if you see this i just wanted to say that you are my idol and i look up to you.
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