So much to learn, and so little time to sit down and read. Thanks Audible.
As I listened to this book my opinion about Tyson swung to both extremes. In the first part of the book I was really pulling for Mike, he worked hard to overcome extremely disadvantaged early years. He had his periodic outbursts, and issues, but under the mentoring of his friend and coach, Cus D'Amato, he rose above it all to eventually become champion. During this part of the story he also began battling against so many people trying to rip him off now that he had a ton of money.
At that point in the book I was totally in Mike's corner, but unfortunately after Cus died the story of his life went down hill so fast, and so uncontrollably from there that it eventually became hard to tolerate. In some ways this part of the book was fascinating as well, but also very sad. It is mind-boggling how someone could blow hundreds of millions of dollars so fast. He was constantly getting in street fights, high on cocaine, sleeping with every girl he could, fathering several kids, and being accused by gold-diggers for fathering others he didn't. He was sued countless times, sometimes with merit and others by people trying to fleece him, but after awhile I began to stop feeling sorry for him and started thinking he is getting everything he deserves.
The language, and sex talk is pretty strong throughout. I told my wife this book is like novocaine for sensitivities to the F-word, it must appear at least a thousand times in the book. If you aren't easily offended I think you will find this book very interesting. It is a rare look into a life most of us could never fathom.
Born to Run was a very fun book to read, and full of amazing characters, but what I loved the most were all the nuggets of interesting and useful information sandwiched into the story (i.e. studies on the value of running shoes, the superfood Chia seeds, the backgrounds of successful ultra distance runners). I'm sure it starting to annoy my wife how much I cite things from this book, but it's too good not to share it.
In addition to being an interesting book with tons of good info, it was incredibly well written, and the authors humor is spot on.
I've never been a fan of the Yankees, but always been impressed with the classy way Rivera handles himself. When I saw his book was coming out I was very eager to listen to it, and was not disappointed. His transition from life as a relatively poor kid in Panama to the New York Yankees is an astounding story. Disney couldn't come up with a more amazing life transformation. For example, he showed up for his one-day audition with the Yankees in tattered clothes with a big hole in his shoe where his toe stuck out, and no glove. He had to borrow a glove from another player to take his turn pitching.
Even after making it big Rivera remained humble his entire career. He never held out for more money, and never had big battles with his coaches or teammates. Throughout the book he continually points to his faith in Jesus as his source of strength and joy. I thought it was really refreshing to see a person who doesn't just talk the talk, and then live a life that doesn't back it up. He is a class guy through and through.
I loved listening to this book and will recommend it to everyone I know. I only wish it would have been a few hours longer, especially focusing on his pre-Yankee days.