Pro Wrestling Books

Wrestling with words

Pro Wrestling Books - Wrestling with words

Recent Release Roundup

Here are a couple of books released in recent weeks that didn’t get advance listings and thus weren’t in our weekly release schedule.

Onyx is Better than You: 10 Steps to Become a Manager of Champions

Have you ever yearned to be a wrestling manager? Do you want to manage champions? Onyx Manager of Champions is giving you ten steps do so!

Super Pro K.O.: Gold for Glory by Jarrett Williams

In the rough and tumble world of Super Pro K.O., professional wrestling is no joke. With contenders of every kind battling for glory on a nightly basis, there’s tons of drama inside and outside the ring! Current SPKO champion and arrogant heel King Crown Jr prepares for a match against mysterious newcomer Bad Bad Butch O’Rowdy, who may care more about settling a personal score with Crown than the title itself. Meanwhile, hotshot Joe Somiano is getting used to the spotlight as his career takes off, but will it be stopped with the arrival of baseball superstar turned wrestler Romeo Colossus?

Controversy: Everything You Never Knew by Chris Kalisz (Author), Kristian Frost (Narrator)

This is a true, personal story that follows a young boy who’s dream was to wrestle with the largest wrestling company in the world… The WWE. Follow me through my real life journey, as you discover all of the obstacles, personal and professional, both inside and outside, of the wrestling ring that I have endured. Gain insight into what I have experienced in wrestling and life, what I’ve learned in wrestling and in life, how I’ve felt in wrestling and in life, and what I have overcome, both personally and professionally, to achieve the dream that I dreamt as a teenager who had no idea what a crazy ride this would be! I hope you enjoy the ride!

A Fan’s Perspective: One Man’s Exploration of British Wrestling by Oliver Newman

In the early years of the new millennium three men led the charge in British Wrestling – ‘Wonderkid’ Jonny Storm, Doug Williams and ‘The Phoenix’ Jody Fleisch. This book is the story of my first hearing about British Wrestling being talked about on British Radio via Talksport (2001) all the way through to the first few months (2007) of my almost two year quest to prove that British Wrestling was as good as it’s counterparts in the U.S. Japan, Mexico and beyond.

Wrestling Record Book: Mid-South/UWF 1979-1987 by Mark James

Take a step back in time and look at the world of professional wrestling that took place in Bill Watts’ Mid-South/UWF territory. Mid-South was one of wrestling’s greatest promotions. This book has all the known cards and results for Watts’ area (that included Arkansas, Louisiana, Texas, Oklahoma and Mississippi). Along with the cards and results, this book includes dozens of photos from the mat wars. The book’s Foreward is written by a guy who spent time in the promotion, the Louisville slugger himself, Jim Cornette.

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The Death of WCW by RD Reynolds and Bryan Alvarez

For a tale that would make you cry if you didn’t laugh, this book blends its authors’ voices for a particularly apt tone.

Even 15 years later, the speed of the decline of WCW remains easy to underestimate. In 1998 it became the most profitable wrestling company in the history of the business.  In March 1999 a Hulk Hogan vs Ric Fair match attracted 325,000 buys; the same bout in March 2000 drew just 60,000, while house show attendance collapsed at a similar rate. In March 2001 the company sold for just a few million dollars.

Just how this happened is detailed at length in a book that divides its focus between the big picture of the business, addressed mainly by Bryan Alvarez, and the fine detail of the weekly descent into some of the least effective creative ever seen on wrestling programming, detailed by RD Reynolds in the same manner with which he addressed wider WrestleCrap.

It’s an effective approach that keeps the book entertaining (if perversely so at times) while informative, bringing home the point that a product so wildly out of kilter with the audience’s tastes was enough to sink a company  that had every advantage imaginable. The only downside is that the writing is highly opinionated, particularly in Reynolds’ sections, which could annoy those looking for a purely objective tone. That said, it’s unfair to criticise it for being exceptionally negative for long periods given the subject matter at times.

While I’ve not read the new edition myself, the 10th anniversary update is said to have an impressive amount of additional detail and context, though some readers have questioned whether it justifies an ‘upgrade’ in itself.

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