Here’s a bumper crop of books released in recent weeks that didn’t get advance listings and thus weren’t in our weekly release schedule.
The Most Offensive Storylines in WWE History by Stuart Carapola
WWE has always been willing to take risks and push the envelope to entertain its fans, and sometimes, things work out great and we end up with legendary superstars like Stone Cold Steve Austin and Degeneration X. Other times, things don’t go so well and WWE comes away looking incompetent at best and downright tasteless at worst. The Most Offensive Storylines In WWE History looks at the absolute worst of the worst, the storylines that not only misfired on all cylinders, but made us embarrassed to be wrestling fans. Relive Big Show’s anguish as the Big Boss Man stole his dead father’s casket, the night Dawn Marie killed Torrie Wilson’s father with her overactive sex drive, Muhammad Hassan’s transformation from All-American kid to hardened Arab terrorist, and of course, Vince McMahon’s feud with God! Bonus features in this book include: -The Ten Biggest Can’t Miss Superstars (Who All Missed) -Gimmicks, Gimmicks, And More Gimmicks! -The Raw/Nitro Simulcast: The Last Night Of The Monday Night Wars
2001: The Year Professional Wrestling Died by Stuart Carapola
When 2001 began, there were three national wrestling companies, a weekly Monday night ratings battle, and a huge, ravenous fanbase of diehard wrestling fans. By the time the year was over, there was just one national wrestling company, fan interest had waned significantly, and the ratings began a steady decline that continues to this day. What happened? How could a business that had enjoyed unprecedented success as a pop culture phenomenon in the late 90s and early 2000s have fallen so far in the span of twelve months? How did WCW and ECW, once highly regarded pro wrestling empires, become punchlines on WWE documentaries? And how did WWE, the company that did everything right during the Monday Night Wars, wind up doing everything wrong the instant they were over? 2001: The Year Professional Wrestling Died looks at how the entire wrestling industry collapsed overnight. It chronicles the deaths of both WCW and ECW, the poorly-run InVasion angle that followed, the criminal misuse of WCW and ECW’s wrestlers and legacies, and the ways in which the fallout from this catastrophic time still affect WWE and the wrestling business today.
Hillbilly Jim: The Incredible Story of a Wrestling Superstar by Gary P West
In the 1980s, the World Wrestling Federation (WWF) was at its peak as a driving force in the multimillion dollar sports entertainment business. Stars of the WWF became household names, even with folks who didn t follow wrestling…names like Hulk Hogan, Andre the Giant, and Randy “The Macho Man” Savage were as well-known as anyone from Hollywood.
One of those stars was Jim Morris, aka Hillbilly Jim, from Bowling Green, Kentucky. Billed as a country mountain hick from Mudlick, Hillbilly Jim burst upon the WWF scene in 1984. With a toothy smile, baby face and big blue eyes sitting on top of his 6-foot-7-inch 300 lb. frame, complete with a scraggly beard, bib overalls and slouch hat to match, Jim s outgoing personality and natural showmanship were a big hit with the fans.
Growing up poor in central Kentucky, Jim had more in common with Motown than mountain men, but his street-wise savvy and an intense work ethic kept him out of trouble in his youth, and later helped him succeed as a star high school basketball player and, following high school, a champion weightlifter.
Hillbilly Jim The Incredible Story of a Wrestling Superstar is the true story of Hillbilly Jim Morris, from his humble beginnings in Bowling Green, KY to his glory days as one of the most loveable characters in the WWF, and on to his current gig as the host of Hillbilly Jim s Moonshine Matinee on Sirius Satellite Radio.
Boogie Jam 4Ever: A Jimmy Valiant Comic Book by Brien Wayne Powell
An anthology comic book featuring stories by Brien Wayne Powell, illustrated by various artists, inspired by Hall of Fame Wrestling Legend Handsome Jimmy Valiant, the Boogie Woogie Man & his great pal Magnet Man. Guest starring other members of the BWC Family w/a special appearance by Bill Apter! Special bonus text story by Douglas Powell! 24 pages of humor, action, thrills & lots of fun!
Cauliflower Heart: Wrestling With Life by Diana Hart
In the blink of an eye, the idyllic world that Claudine Bellamy knew, brutally turns upside down. While her family struggles with tragedy and permanent loss, their professional wrestling business is publicly exposed. Acutely vulnerable, is Claudine resilient enough to resist being exploited by corrupt vultures of the celebrity world and protect her precious family?
I Kicked Out On Two: The Education of a Wrestler by Bobby Blaze Smedley
Bobby Blaze Smedley is a natural–born storyteller and his voice comes through loud and clear in this book. Some of the stories are funny, some inspirational, some educational or even philosophical. Every one of them is totally entertaining. *Insightful, Educatonal, & Honest *Candid, Blunt, & Outrageous Except.© Reprinted by Permission. All Rights Reserved.: The response to Blaze’s first book has been well received. Known throughout the world for his days in professional wrestling as a former Smoky Mountain Heavyweight Champion as well as worldwide television exposure on World Championship Wrestling and the more recent WWE Network, Blaze seems hotter than ever. Now he’s back with even more fascinating stories told through his unique story-telling style that makes for a fun, heart-felt read for everyone. You don’t have to be a fan of professional wrestling to enjoy his stories.
The Wrestler: The Pursuit of a Dream by Bill Vincent
The Wrestler—Nicolaus Martin has always loved wrestling. Everyone called him Nicky. As a child, he and his brothers would wrestle around as they watched the WWF, WCW and NWA. No matter how poor their lives were wrestling would make it all better, even if it was for an hour. Nicky and his family were very poor. Every winter there was at least a month with no electricity at their home. The Wrestler—Nicky was bullied starting at the age of thirteen. The more he got picked on the tougher he got. Nicky and his buddies had such an imagination. They made up their own wrestling in a little town in Illinois. They made their championship belts out of cardboard and aluminum foil. By age seventeen, his toughness got him noticed by a small wrestling organization. Before he knew it, he was wrestling in Japan for $50 a night. Now this was not entertainment. This stuff was real. The Wrestler—Nicky broke his nose several times and was on the injured list more than not. He got to the place, that he would not let on that he was in pain.
Spandex Ballet by Lee Kyle
Imagine if you’d always dreamed of being a professional wrestler. The bright lights, the screaming crowds, the money and the stardom. Now, imagine if you’d always dreamed of being a professional wrestler but you weren’t really very good at it. For nine years this was Lee Kyle’s reality. Find out how he wasted his twenties pretending to fight with various oddballs and enjoying some of it. “Lee Kyle sounds like he might have been the worst wrestler ever” – Journal Culture Magazine
I’m a Mark: Dreams and Destiny of a Wrestling Fan by Fred Esposito
If you’re reading this, it’s because you’re a wrestling fan. If you’re a wrestling fan, then at least once, you’ve dreamed of being a part of the show in the famed squared circle. Ever since the age of nine, all I ever wanted was to work for the WWE. Despite having horrible social anxiety, I went for my dream and failed. I ended up broke and broken. While I never did end up as the next Bobby “The Brain” Heenan, Hulk Hogan , or Randy Orton, I do have stories about meeting them. I’m not as well known as “Stone Cold” Steve Austin , but I did sleep on the same couch that he did. (So I was told) To be a WWE superstar you have to have “it”. While I didn’t have “it“, I do have a ton of stories about meeting wrestlers while losing everything I had, just to go for my dream. Some wrestlers were nice and some not so much. Some got mad at me and some….were just plain weird. I have stories of meeting:
The Dudley Boys
Greg “The Hammer” Valentine
“Iron” Mike Sharpe
The Honky Tonk Man
“Hacksaw” Jim Duggan
and many more…
I may have never made it to the WWE, but I had a
ride trying to get there.
Complete Science of Wrestling by George Hackenschmidt
“But then, equally of course, every man who takes up wrestling seriously will only do so because he is fond of it, because he prefers wrestling to most, if not all, other sports and pastimes. Every wrestler who ever trod the mat is a potential champion. He may not have been endowed with the wrestling instinct, but he will be able to cultivate a high degree of wrestling science, even quickness, if not absolute lightning rapidity of movement, which, if combined with the necessary strength and stamina, may enable him to compete with all but the greatest champions on equal terms. Skill, that is to say, the science of wrestling, can only be cultivated by practice, and the man who takes up wrestling seriously must get as much practice as he can with the most skilful wrestlers. The better his opponents are, the faster will be his progress in knowledge of the art, as also in the power of its application. He can learn a good deal also in another way, and that is by closely watching serious bouts between skilled wrestlers, and by carefully practising such moves as attract his notice.” – George Hackenschmidt This is an original version, restored and re-formatted edition of Hackenschmidt’s 1909 classic
Abusive Relationship: My Attempt to Escape from Professional Wrestling by Aaron Madden
What if your childhood dream had a tendency to become an abusive nightmare? Unbeknownst to you, all those years of hard work, dedication and desire that were sacrificed to reach that dream were ultimately leading you toward an unforeseen world of physical, mental and emotional abuse. At first the abuse didn’t exist. As you began to live out your dream, you fell deeper in love with it as all the wonderful experiences you had always imagined became reality. But then one day you discovered that there had always been a price to pay. Throughout years of this pursuit, the festering nightmare began to surface. And as you attempted to escape this nightmare, you quickly realized that you were trapped. This is what happened to Aaron Madden, better known to wrestling fans as “Luscious” Rocky Reynolds. For nearly two years, Aaron journaled after every wrestling show, his abusive relationship with his childhood dream of professional wrestling. Spending nearly two decades as a professional wrestler, Aaron wrestled in numerous territories throughout the country, held dozens of championships, stepped into the ring with multiple legends, performed on national television and proudly captured and defended the NWA World Junior Heavyweight Title a remarkable four times. But as Aaron got older and became a loving husband and father, he began to find himself struggling to prioritize his love for his family with his love for professional wrestling. Wincing in pain to get out of bed in the morning, pulling out of the driveway and regretfully watching his daughters grow up in the rear view mirror, selfishly spending his anniversary at wrestling shows while his wife sat at home alone and constantly concerned that he was limiting the quality of his life with every match he wrestled, eventually brought Aaron to the realization that he had to get away from professional wrestling. But like a beaten woman who repeatedly returns to her abuser, Aaron discovered that he was trapped in his Abusive Relationship with professional wrestling.