One of WWE's most unlikely champions of all time and also one of its most popular, Bryan has proved to the world and to all of WWE that looks can be deceiving. Just ask anyone who's ever underestimated him…right before he went out and whipped the WWE universe into a frenzy.
This is Bryan's behind-the-scenes story told for the first time ever by the "YES!" Man himself – from his beginnings as a child wanting to wrestle to his ten years circling the globe on the independent circuit and his remarkable climb to the upper ranks of WWE.
As the biggest week of his life unfolds, Aberdeen, Washington's bearded son reflects in full detail on his incredible path to the top and gives his take on the events that have shaped him. With his Bryan-ized blend of modesty and surprising candor, Daniel pulls no punches (or martial arts kicks) as he reveals his true thoughts on his evolution as a performer, his various roles in WWE versus the independent years, life on the road, at home, and much more.
And of course, get the untold story surrounding the "YES!" chant that evolved to full-fledged movement, skyrocketing his career. This audiobook chronicles all the hard work, values, influences, unique life choices, and more, leading to his watershed week at WrestleMania 30. You won't want to miss it. Yes! We're sure about this.
©2015 WWE (P)2015 Macmillan Audio
For a biography, it was very well done. It really peeled back the curtain on recent WWE history and that's always cool to hear about. And it does have all the things wrestling fans want. Good road stories.
However, this book interweaves the life of Bryan Danielson and the week leading up to WrestleMania 30 for Daniel Bryan. The difference could not be more jarring. One half of the book is Bryan Danielson telling you what he wants to tell you, the other half is the story WWE wants you to know. The content and performance of these WWE scripted parts are corny and comes off like it's meant for a 2nd grader. It's painful to sit through like a bad Monday Night.
But the Bryan Danielson parts are good. It's great and refreshing hearing about a WWE superstar who isn't an absolute greaseball.
This book alters between two narratives from beginning to end. Each chapter starts with a journalistic section following Daniel Bryan in the days leading up to Wrestlemania 30, and then switches to a Bryan-narrated section recounting his rise.
The primary narrative is the classic wrestler's story, familiar to anyone who follows the business but full of enough details to be entertaining. Daniel Bryan recounts his journey from humble beginnings to stardom, touching on all his underground work, training, and favorite matches. I enjoyed these sections, which made up a bulk of the book. One thing lacking was introspection from Bryan about his life and evolution in and out of the ring. But I was nevertheless fully entertained by each Bryan-narrated section.
The journalistic sections that begin each chapter follow Bryan in the lead-up to his epic Wrestlemania 30 matches. These sections are terrible. Many other reviews attack the narrator's cheesiness, which is fair but hardly scrapes the surface. The real problem with these sections is the awful, embarrassing writing. I cringed at each new chapter, when the over-the-top, clunky, weak, and stupid words began again. It's hard to believe these sections were actually published. They are garbage, and completely unnecessary to the story.
Bryan's trip to Mexico for his first mask.
Bryan did a fine job.
The narrator of the journalistic sections was bad, but not even Morgan Freeman could save the horrible writing. Those sections should be cut entirely from the book.
The crappy journalistic sections are only a fraction of the book. The majority of it is pretty good.
Cut the entire lead-up to Wrestlemania sections at the start of each chapter. The story works fine without them, and they are so bad that they detract from the overall experience.
I really really liked this book. My problem is with co-narrator Peter Berkrot. The way he spoke during his part of the book was unbearable. After the first chapter, I skipped every part of his just to listen to Daniel speak. If you want to hear about how Daniel Bryan became one of the best wrestlers in the world, then I suggest you get this book and skip the parts with Mr. Berkrot.
Daniel Bryan’s Yes!: My Improbable Journey to the Main Event of WrestleMania is a great retelling of the career of WWE’s most unlikely of recent world champions. He tells earnestly about his career, the people that helped him throughout it and also of the people and events that didn’t quite go his way. From highs as champion of Ring of Honor, to lows like getting hired and fired from WWE developmental in the early 00s. Daniel Bryan’s voice echoes throughout the book and, despite a few f-bombs here and there, comes off about as nice as his in-ring persona seems.
The story itself is both written by Bryan himself, as well as writer Craig Tello, who starts each chapter with a third person narration of Daniel Bryan and his -then soon-to-be- wife Brie Bryan’s final few days leading up to Daniel’s big WrestleMania 30 moment, leading into Daniel Bryan’s own first person chronological retelling of his life and career. It paints a perfect picture of the man that Daniel Bryan is, his vision on wrestling and how his career unfolded. It is, in that sense, the perfect book.
The narration of Craig Tello’s portion of the book is read by Peter Berkrot and, honestly, leaves much to be desired. Berkrot reads the parts as if he were reading a big fantasy, trying to put much more emotion into the narration than is needed and expected. It is very distracting and takes a lot away from what is being said. Luckily, those parts only serve as the introduction to the meat of the story, Daniel Bryan’s parts. Those, are read by Daniel Bryan himself and his narration is, as one would expect from an autobiography, natural. Often, and accurately, described in the book as soft-spoken, Daniel Bryan reads his tale as if he were sitting next to you and telling you his stories in normal conversation. His emotion clearly ringing through his voice, especially when the subject turns to his wife or deceased father. Giving his narration an extra dimension over regular narration.
All in all, if you like Daniel Bryan, or pro-wrestling in general, Yes! is pretty much the perfect book. Focussing mostly on Bryan’s wrestling career and sidestepping where needed in his personal life, it provides a unique and uncensored look on an unlikely WrestleMania Main Eventer and on the backstage life of wrestler in both the independent scene, as well as the WWE.
If like me, you're a huge fan of Daniel Bryan then you'll absolutely love this book. It is narrated by Daniel Bryan himself which he tells his story ever so eloquently. This book drew lots of emotion out of me. Happiness, frustration, anger, sadness and joyfulness. It is an emotional roller coaster but a great one at that. Very worth the read.
This is a must-listen for any wrestling fan. Having Daniel read large sections of the book was great. I didn't much care for Berkrot's portions, but they were quick enough that they didn't ruin the story.
"An audio of (literally) two parts"
This is hard to review because of the structure of the audio. Around 80% of it is read by Daniel Bryan himself. It's first person and it's great. It's funny, heartwarming, informative...everything you would want it to be.
Essentially it is the story of a man who overcame a series of potentially insurmountable obstacles in front of him to reach to the top of his profession.
The problem is the other 20%. It's the story of Daniel's Wrestlemania week, written third person as a news article by Craig Tello. Tello is (or was) a WWE.com writer.
Daniel's own parts are understated, a measure of the man himself. This is rambunctious and riddled with over-the-top superlatives that jar with the other style.
For instance, nobody over 'says' anything. Any line of dialogue is followed by, 'he asserts'; 'he announces', 'he details' - or whatever. Look, we know you own a thesaurus. So what? Less is more and all that.
It also contradicts some of the parts Daniel himself describes. Daniel says his first PPV was the 1996 Royal Rumble, which he bought with his friends. Chapters later and Tello says Daniel's first PPV was Wrestlemania 12.
Who's supposed to be editing this?
Lastly, the narrator of the Tello parts is a complete clown. Anyone, ie a professional, who does even the most basic amount of research could tell you that 'John Cena' is pronounced 'John See-na'. But, no. In the first-person parts, Daniel with pronounce it correctly, moments later, Mr Unprofessional will say: 'John Say-na'.
This split format creates such a jarring experience that it's like two different books. Every time Peter Berkrot is busy mispronouncing something (which is a lot), you're yearning to get back to Daniel telling his own story.
I'd still recommend - but with the caveats above. The most frustrating thing is that this is all so avoidable. Why didn't a copy editor cross-reference the two parts so that one doesn't contradict the other? Why isn't there an audio editor to check how names and wrestling terms are pronounced? Absolute basics.
"a must listen"
absolutely loved it. The guy is a true wwe legend yes! yes! yes! yes! yes!
"Must for wrestling fans"
The story of the rise of one of the most popular wrestlers in history. A fascinating insight into the life of Daniel Bryan who did overcome the odds to achieve his goal.
"Well worth it"
I really enjoyed this. As an old wcw fan who walked away in 01, then back to TNa in 07 to walk away again when AJ left, I was was wondering if it was worth listening to a book from a guy u had never seen wrestle.... I am so glad I did. I had no idea about this guys back story or trails in wrestling. It is also class that he read the book him self. The jumping back and forward to and from wm30 was something different that broke up the chapters nicely. I give this a big YES! YES! YES!
"YES! YES! YES!"
Fantastic insight into the professional wrestling business and a performer who defied the odds in his personal and professional life to rise to the top. The ending made me teary-eyed and filled with a whole range of emotions. Peter Berkot's third person narration is a little dull, but Daniel Bryan telling his own words really brings his story to life.
"YES YES YES"
great. But did find the little narrative at the start of each chapter slightly annoying.
Awesome listen. Really enjoyed this audio book. Learnt a lot a out Bryan's story and I've followed his career for a long time. Highly recommended to any wrestling fan.
"Yes yes yes"
An excellent listen about Daniel Bryan career and life.
This book for wwe fans or wrestling fans who know who Daniel Bryan or Bryan danielson is.
Yes Yes Yes
"Daniel Bryan bits great. WWE bits not so."
This book has two very distinct tones. One is what you came for: Daniel Bryan in his own words. The other isn't. Whilst 80% of this book is a standard autobiography written and read well by Bryan himself the other 20% is a third hand account of his WM30 week that is so full of cliches, needless trademarked nicknames and branding that it almost feels like a parody of a WWE product. Thankfully the Bryan stuff is the majority and is great.
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