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on 5 February 2016
This tells the story of Rafael nadal bought as a gift for my 'other half' not my choice of reading, but discussing it with her, seems impressed as she is a big nadal fan!!
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on 24 April 2017
feds nemesis
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on 10 April 2013
It was so well written, captivating and was sad when it came to the end. Write another one now Rafa
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VINE VOICEon 23 January 2013
This book was a gift and probably not one I would have bought myself, despite being a lifelong follower of tennis and a fan of both Nadal's game and demeanour. That said, I've quite enjoyed the novelty of reading this auto/biography, although I do generally think a bit more life should be lived before one embarks on such an undertaking for best effect. I feel this book's main flaw is in its padding out with repetition a dearth of material.

The need for padding is perhaps not just because of Nadal's (relative) youth, but also because he is a focussed and private individual by nature. Something that to those of us who "know" of Nadal on the tour, through his press-conferences and interviews, will come as no surprise, and something that makes him one of the sport's most endearing personalities. It doesn't really make him the most thrilling subject for a book, nor does it make this book a place of any great revelations, either about the world of tennis, or its players, or indeed Nadal's own team and family.

Divided into 9 chapters, each chapter opens with Nadal dissecting a final he played in each of the four Grand Slams starting with (arguably) the greatest ever played: Wimbledon, 2008. These sections do tend to wander at times, but unlike others I felt Nadal's "voice" to be quite consistent with what I imagine, give or take the inevitable vagaries of translation. He offers insight into the physical and mental pressures of the game through the kind of detailed analysis of points that forms part of his match preparation--and at his most revelatory he recounts the affects of injury and his parents' separation on his life. John Carlin's companion pieces offer thoughts from Nadal's team, the most interesting of which is the complex coach/player relationship. It's a fascinating dynamic that seemed to be in its state of greatest flux--and therefore most appealing--just as the book ended!

Rafa: My Story is solidly written, easy to read but could never be called exciting, relying too much on a few central themes that are regurgitated often without offering further analysis. There's no gossip or egotism; instead the auto/biography is a testament to the peculiarly Mallorcan influences of family, humility and reserve. Nothing is given away, and what is revealed is done so phlegmatically by all concerned. I finished this book equally admiring of Nadal's qualities and of the determination and mental strength required to be a champion in an individual sport, but feeling slightly disappointed that I'd learned little of Nadal that I didn't already know.
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I was eagerly awaiting Rafa's autobiography and pre-ordered it months ago, it was well worth the wait. I really enjoyed it and I read it in one weekend as I couldn't put it down, it's a real page turner!

It gives a real insight into what makes Rafa tick, it's very honest, inspiring and really interesting; I've been a fan of Rafa's for 6 years and I admire him even more after reading this book.

The book is really well written and each chapter has 2 sections, the 1st written by Rafa and the 2nd by John Carlin with more info and insights. I especially like the way he describes Rafa as "Clark Kent and Superman" and reveals that Rafa has fears and insecurites (as most of us do & can relate to) but the way he conquers them and has achieved all he has is a real inspiration. I also love the inclusion of Rafa's family giving more inights about his personality.

There are 16 pages of colour photos in it ranging from when Rafa was a child to his US Open win last year.

A great book, Rafa fans will love it.
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on 21 August 2011
This really is Rafael Nadal laid bare and with total honesty by himself, his family, friends and confidantes. As autobiographies go, this is my favourite and easiest read so far, and I have read some good ones so far. I guess it helps that I am a massive Rafa fan, but everything in the book smacks of total honesty, of absolute truth to the point of embarrassment, to just plain telling it like it is. It shows us how Rafa was brought up in the loving cocoon of his family, pushed to breaking point by Uncle Toni, how he shaped him, how Rafa flourished and grew as the most awesome tennis player we see today. Aside from all that, as if we need it, there are some great photos of him and his family and extended family. A truly great read if ever there was one, and the only book book I've bought since I got my kindle!
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on 1 September 2011
A revealing insight to one of the greatest players of the game, Rafa speaks candidly about injury, family, friends and what went through his mind during that epic Wimbledon 08 final, and all captured beautifully by John Carlin. When reading the book you feel that Rafa is sitting beside you telling you his story, you become engrossed in the highs and lows of his career and the impact Uncle Toni has had, particularly in the early years. For me as an avid Rafa fan the importance of family to him was well known, how they have shaped him to be the person he is and how he remains so grounded simply because of those around him is fascinating. John Carlin also brings an added dimension to the book speaking to those closest to Rafa, this being his parents, sister, girlfriend and extended family who each individually talk about one of most famous men on the planet but see him simply as a son, brother, boyfriend, nephew or grandchild. Rafa also speaks about his team who travels with him and importance they play not only in his tennis career but in keeping him sane when travelling the world. A must read for any tennis or sports fan, Rafa My Story is beautifully written and full of gems, I was genuinely sad to come to the end of this book.
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on 25 August 2011
** spoiler alert ** As a huge Rafa fan this was interesting to read, mainly for the indepth match analysis he gives for the 2008 Wimbledon final. I am sure many people watch these big matches and wonder what is going through the players minds during a massive occasion like that and here we have one of the biggest players ever giving us a blow by blow account.
There are definitely no big revelations, I knew all the stories he referred to in here, from the eating too many chocolate croissants, having special shoes designed to uncle Toni telling him he could make it rain, so if you're a long time Rafa fan who follows him closely you're not going to learn anything new from this at all.
The only thing that did surprise me was the level at which he discussed Toni's strictness, again I have known about the water bottle thing for a while, as well as the restaurant/trouser incident but it was different reading it from Rafa's perspective and it comes across that Rafa is in no doubt that Toni's behaviour helped to mould him into the player he is today, along with his very supportive parents.
Overall a good read with some interesting point of view information but not the warts and all kind of book that Agassi gave us, which is actually not what a Rafa fan should expect anyway. :)
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on 25 August 2011
A wonderful and long awaited insight into the life of this sporting genius. It reinforces the humility he shows both on and off the court as well as cataloging his aims, values and what makes him tick. The honesty from both Rafa and his family members and friends is refreshing. An excellent account of his career so far and his hopes, fears and aims for the future. Worth every penny and some lovely photograhs as well. Enjoy !!
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on 16 September 2011
An excellent book, very revealing and honest. In this day and age of reality tv and pointless celebrities here we have a genuine superstar whos achieved something through hardwork and dedication. A lot of sportstars and other celebrities who have achieved nothing yet behave like idiots should look at this man with his modesty and humility and they might learn a thing or two. Very well written and overall a great story about a geniunely nice guy and one of the greatest tennis players of all time.
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