Great Sporting Stories to Inspire You these Summer Holidays

Whether on the field, the pitch, the track or commentating from the sidelines, these men are amongst the biggest names in sport today. Their inspiring stories are a must for any sport fanatics summer reading collection.

Pushing the Limits

by Kurt Fearnley with Warwick Green

When Kurt Fearnley was a kid, he would leave his wheelechair at the front gate and go exploring with his brothers and sisters. ‘You’re going to have to be stronger than we are,’ they told him, ‘and we know you will be.’

The kid from Carcoar was raised to believe he could do anything. At fifteen, he won his first medal. Then he conquered the world, winning three Paralympic gold medals, seven world championships and more than 35 marathons. A world-beater in and out of his wheelchair, Kurt is a true Australian champion.

Inspiring, exhilarating and highly entertaining, Pushing the Limits takes us inside the mind of a kid with a disability growing up in a tiny town, a teenager finding his place in the world, and an elite sportsman who refuses to give up, no matter how extreme the challenge.

World-beater Kurt Fearnley was born without the lower portion of his spine. He grew up in tiny Carcoar in NSW, and took up wheelchair racing in his teens. He has gone on to be a three-time Paralympic gold medallist and has won marathons all around the world, including the prestigious New York, London and Chicago marathons multiple times. His exploits are not confined to wheelchair racing – he has crawled the Kokoda track and the Great Wall of China and sailed with a winning Sydney to Hobart Yacht Race crew. Kurt’s exploits both in and out of sport saw him recognised as the 2009 NSW Young Australian of the Year. He lives in Newcastle with his wife and son.

Order a copy from Booktopia, Australia’s Local Bookstore


KP: The Autobiography

by Kevin Pietersen

The long-awaited autobiography of England’s most colourful cricketer.

The fascinating life story of professional cricketer Kevin Pietersen, MBE, from his childhood in South Africa to his recent experiences as one of the leading lights in the world of international cricket. Kevin was dropped from the England squad in February of this year, seemingly calling time on an international career that began nearly ten years earlier. The decision puzzled many observers – although the England team had failed miserably in the Ashes tour of 2013-14, Kevin was the tourists’ leading run scorer across the series, and he remains the country’s highest run scorer of all time across all formats of the game.

This autumn Kevin will reveal all in his autobiography, telling the stories behind the many other highs and lows of his incredible career. Giving readers the full story of his life, from his childhood in South Africa to his recent experiences as one of the leading lights in the world of international cricket, this will be an autobiography that entertains and fascinates readers in equal measure.

Kevin Peter Pietersen is a 34 year-old professional cricketer, and the highest England run scorer in all international forms of the game combined.

Order a copy from Booktopia, Australia’s Local Bookstore


The Second Half

by Roy Keane with Roddy Doyle

In an eighteen-year playing career for Cobh Ramblers, Nottingham Forest, and Manchester United (under Sir Alex Ferguson) and Celtic, Roy Keane dominated every midfield he led to glory. Aggressive and highly competitive, his attitude helped him to excel as captain of Manchester United from 1997 until his departure in 2005. He played at an international level for nearly all of his career, representing the Republic of Ireland over fourteen years, mainly as team captain, until an incident with national coach Mick McCarthy resulted in Keane’s walk-out from the 2002 World Cup.

Since retiring as a player, Keane has managed Sunderland and Ipswich and become a notably contrarian pundit for ITV. He is assistant (to Martin O’Neill) manager of the Ireland team. The TV analyst reflects the manager, the player, and the man himself, the unique Roy Keane – Keano. As part of a tiny elite of football players, Roy Keane has lived and experienced what very few people could ever imagine. His status one of football’s greatest stars is undisputed, but what of the challenges beyond the pitch? How did he succeed in coming to terms with life as a former Manchester United and Ireland leader and champion, reinvent himself as a broadcaster, and cope with the psychological struggles this entailed? This book is a personal odyssey, a blend of anecdote and reflection which re-evaluates the meaning of success.

In following his personal struggle to reinvent himself, confronting a few demons along the way, The Second Half blends memoir and motivational writing in a manner which both disquiets and reassures in Roy Keane’s original voice, in a stunning collaboration brilliantly captured with Man Booker Prize-winning writer Roddy Doyle.

Order a copy from Booktopia, Australia’s Local


Adam Gilchrist: The Man. The Cricketer. The Legend.

by Adam Gilchrist

Going in first or seventh, wearing whites or colours, Adam Gilchrist was the most exhilarating cricketer of the modern age.

This is the most complete, intimate and fascinating illustrated autobiography of ‘Gilly’, one of the most loved sportsmen of his generation.

Featuring personal photographs, stories and precious keepsakes from Gilchrist’s private life and illustrious career, this book provides unprecedented access to Gilly, on and off the field. Peppered with anecdotes, reflections and jibes from friends, family and many of the biggest names in Australian and world cricket, this is the ultimate collection for sporting enthusiasts.

Many critics believe Adam Gilchrist is the greatest wicketkeeper/batsman to have played the game, but Adam’s huge popularity does not rest solely on his incredible track record. To his millions of fans around the world, it is the way he plays the game – rather than simply the sum of his achievements – that marks him out as one of the best-loved cricketers of his generation. He is both a swashbuckling batsman and record-breaking wicketkeeper, yet perhaps his true impact has come from the manner in which he plays his cricket – with an integrity and sense of values that many thought had departed the game forever.

Order a copy from Booktopia, Australia’s Local Bookstore


Captain’s Diary

by Michael Clarke

The inside story of the 2013 – 14 Ashes triumph.

After a three year losing streak in the Ashes, complete with a painfully recent 3-0 loss in England, facing the victorious English cricket team so soon was never going to be an easy battle. The public’s faith in the young Australian team was waning.

Despite their failures, captain Michael Clarke records in his diary a feeling of hunger in his team: a hunger to strike back, a hunger to prove their talent to the world. A hunger to return the urn.

Michael Clarke led his team to an Ashes victory at home in a 5-0 triumph over the 2013-14 summer. Along the way, the tide of public affection turned in his favour for the first time. Clarke had previously been respected for his deeds as a batsman, but had not truly won the hearts of sports fans.

This Ashes series changed that. Clarke showed the grit, talent, charisma and aggression Australian sports fans look for in their leaders. Revealing and insightful, Clarke once again puts his unique mark on the sport, giving us his account of how he rallied both the team and public behind him to bring the urn home.

 

Order a copy from Booktopia, Australia’s Local Bookstore


Iron Eagle

by Dean Cox & Digby Beacham

In the tough, adrenaline-fueled world of Australian Football, Dean Cox is a legend.

In 2014, the big man from the Dampier Archipelago played his 15th season of AFL, having played more games for the West Coast Eagles than any other man. To fans, Coxy was – and always will be – the Iron Eagle. Iron Eagle is Dean Cox’s incredible and inspiring autobiography – a no-holds-barred chronicle of a wild childhood in the Pilbara that evolved into a glorious career in the AFL and placed him front-and-centre in one of Australian sport’s most amazing rise-and-fall stories.

Tough, loyal, relentless and gifted, the two-metre-tall, seemingly indestructible Eagles ruckman rose from his humble beginnings to fuel the fast and unlikely rise of Western Australia’s first team in the AFL and became a lynch-pin in the Eagle’s famous 2006 premiership, a one-point win over Sydney. With unflinching honesty, Cox’s autobiography Iron Eagle takes us inside West Coast’s glory years – the big games, magic moments and epic battles, including the thrilling clashes with Sydney where just 13 points separated the sides over six amazing games – and also lifts the lid on the off-field scandals that left the Eagles and their fans stranded in a dirty world of drugs, death and heartbreak.

Bullishly upfront and admirably candid, full of up-close revelations and earthy humour and tall-but-true tales, Dean Cox’s Iron Eagle is the uplifting tale of a bush kid with a gift, an Eagle who dared to dream, and a big man who flew into the record books and became an AFL legend.

Order a copy from Booktopia, Australia’s Local


Playing It My Way

by Sachin Tendulkar

The autobiography of the highest scoring batsman of all time.

The greatest run-scorer in the history of cricket, Sachin Tendulkar retired in 2013 after an astonishing 24 years at the top. The most celebrated Indian cricketer of all time, he received the Bharat Ratna Award – India’s highest civilian honour – on the day of his retirement. Now Sachin Tendulkar tells his own remarkable story – from his first Test cap at the age of 16 to his 100th international century and the emotional final farewell that brought his country to a standstill. When a boisterous Mumbai youngster’s excess energies were channelled into cricket, the result was record-breaking schoolboy batting exploits that launched the career of a cricketing phenomenon. Before long Sachin Tendulkar was the cornerstone of India’s batting line-up, his every move watched by a cricket-mad nation’s devoted followers.

Never has a cricketer been burdened with so many expectations; never has a cricketer performed at such a high level for so long and with such style – scoring more runs and making more centuries than any other player, in both Tests and one-day games. And perhaps only one cricketer could have brought together a shocked nation by defiantly scoring a Test century shortly after terrorist attacks rocked Mumbai. His many achievements with India include winning the World Cup and topping the world Test rankings.

Yet he has also known his fair share of frustration and failure – from injuries and early World Cup exits to stinging criticism from the press, especially during his unhappy tenure as captain. Despite his celebrity status, Sachin Tendulkar has always remained a very private man, devoted to his family and his country. Now, for the first time, he provides a fascinating insight into his personal life and gives a frank and revealing account of a sporting life like no other.

Order a copy from Booktopia, Australia’s Local Bookstore


Cricket as I See it

by Allan Border

The forthright, fascinating and informed views and thoughts on world cricket by former Australian captain, Allan ‘A.B.’ Border.

In the twenty years since Allan Border retired as Australian cricket captain he’s been one of the game’s closest and most astute observers. His views on cricket – based on his experiences as a player, a captain, a selector and a commentator – are fascinating, forthright and informed by more than three decades of involvement at the game’s highest level.

In Cricket as I See It he gives us his wisdom and opinions on the game he loves – from epic Tests, the rising power of India, and the Twenty20 revolution, through to his thoughts on captaincy, and the essential arts of batting, bowling and sledging. He reflects on the great players and contests of his generation, as well as controversies such as the underarm bowling affair, the turbulent events that led to him shouldering the captaincy, the rebel tour of South Africa, Steve Waugh’s dropping as one-day captain, and the divisive ‘Monkeygate’ scandal. With cricket, Allan calls it as he sees it, and the result is a book to be savoured and enjoyed by cricket lovers everywhere. overdue.

Order a copy from Booktopia, Australia’s Local


The Voice

by Ray Warren & Andrew Webster

Ray ‘Rabbits’ Warren is the legendary voice of Australian sports commentary. People tell him he must have drunk a bottle of scotch and smoked a packet of cigarettes every day to have the voice that he has. That’s not the case – at least, not anymore . . .

The son of a railway worker, Ray placed his first bet on a horse called Playboy at the age of just six, and won. A lifelong love of the track – and the punt – was born.

During his remarkable broadcasting career, which has now spanned almost five decades, Ray has called three Melbourne Cups, Commonwealth and Olympic Games swimming, and countless rugby league matches alongside his mates Fatty, Sterlo and Gus.

Here, for the first time, Ray reveals the man behind the microphone. He speaks of the great highs and devastating lows of his career and life in the same way he calls every sporting event: with great passion, colour and candour.

Ray “Rabbits” Warren in Junee, New South Wales is an Australian sports commentator, most famous for his coverage of televised professional rugby league matches on the Nine Network. On occasion he is referred to as “The Voice of Rugby League”. Ray also calls the action for Australian swimming team events. On Saturday mornings, he is a member of the panel on Triple M Sydney’s radio sports program Dead Set Legends. Warren also writes columns for sports website The Serve.

Order a copy from Booktopia, Australia’s Local

Rabia Siddique, author of Equal Justice, answers Ten Terrifying Questions

The Booktopia Book Guru asks

Rabia Siddique

author of Equal Justice

Ten Terrifying Questions
____________

1. To begin with why don’t you tell us a little bit about yourself – where were you born? Raised? Schooled?

I am a first generation Australian. My father is a Muslim Indian, my mother a British/Scottish Australian. I spent my early years in India and we immigrated to Perth in the late 1970’s. I attended a Government primary school in a fairly Anglo, post war, working class neighbourhood and was very fortunate to attend Penrhos College, a Uniting Church Private Girls school for my secondary education.

2. What did you want to be when you were twelve, eighteen and thirty? And why?

From a young age I decided I wanted to help others obtain access to justice and find their voice, largely as a result of experiences I had as a child which gave me a strong sense of social justice and equality, so after obtain a BA and LLB from the University of WA I started my career in the law in Perth.

rabia

Author: Rabia Siddique

3. What strongly held belief did you have at eighteen that you do not have now?

As an 18 year old I saw things in a very black and white way.  As I have got older I realise that not everything, in fact very few things are black and white, and that life is filled with many shades of grey. I have always been a tolerant person, but life and the various journey I have had has taught me to be even more accepting, compassionate and forgiving.

4. What were three big events – in the family circle or on the world stage or in your reading life, for example – you can now say, had a great effect on you and influenced you in your career path?

The three most significant and influential events in my life have been experiencing first-hand; the discrimination and prejudice my father suffered as a dark skinned Muslim immigrant to what was then a very conservative Australia in the 1970’s, which gave me an early sense of equality and social justice, the powerlessness I felt as a young child of 9 after having been sexually abused my a neighbour for many months and then being told by my parents to never speak of the abuse to anyone, and the 11 September 2001 terrorist attacks on the US, days before I commissioned as a Legal Officer in the British Army.

5. Considering the innumerable electronic media avenues open to you – blogs, online newspapers, TV, radio, etc – why have you chosen to write a book? aren’t they obsolete?

I guess you could say in some ways I am a traditionalist and I still believe there is no replacement to the experience of reading a remarkable or beautiful book.  Books are the purest and most authentic way of sharing stories, and whilst Equal Justice is also available as an eBook, I believe my story and the messages I convey were worthy of more than a newspaper article or blog.

6. Please tell us about your latest book…

Equal Justice is the story about my life and my journey. It is a memoir about strength, resilience, courage and grit.  It shines a light on authentic and ethical leadership, equality and deals openly with the challenging topics of abuse, war, physical and psychological suffering and a woman excelling in a man’s world. It is a book I am very proud of and a story that has resonated with so many.

Grab a copy of  Rabia Siddique book Equal Justice here

7. If your work could change one thing in this world – what would it be?

If my work could do one thing it would be to inspire others to be agents for change – in their relationships, households, communities and workplaces.

8. Whom do you most admire and why?

Mahatma Gandhi has always been my hero.  He said “Be the change you wish to see in this world” and that has been my life’s mantra and my life’s work.

9. Many people set themselves very ambitious goals. What are yours?

I have been so fortunate and blessed to have achieved and realised so many of my goals and dreams, but I continue to dedicate my life to being the best parent, partner and friend and I can be, and to doing what I can to make a difference and inspire others to also make our communities and societies more tolerant, inclusive and diverse – so we can work and live together in genuine harmony and peace. I believe in dreaming big and striving for the highest. That is something I will impart to my children and something that will always define me as a human being and citizen of the world.

10. What advice do you give aspiring writers?

I believe nearly everyone has a story to tell. Don’t focus on the reasons not to write your stories, but ask yourself why not? Stories are the most effective way to break down barriers and connect with people. Have a focus on what you hope to achieve and make it happen. I truly believe that when you do something for the right reasons it always has a way of working out – joy and success will inevitably follow.

For writers seeking publishing deals – invest in a good literary agent!

Rabia, thank you for playing.

Grab a copy of Equal Justice here


Equal Justice

by Rabia Siddique

Rabia Siddique is a woman with an extraordinary perspective. Growing up as a Muslim in the conservative and monocultural landscape of 1970s suburban Perth, she knew what it was like to be different. It gave her an abiding passion for equality and social justice that was to guide the course of her life. She trained as a lawyer, and found herself working in the UK on that fateful day in September 2001 when Islamic terrorists attacked the US.

She joined the British army in the Judge Advocates’ division as a military lawyer. She served in Iraq and was taken hostage by Islamic insurgents as she tried to negotiate the release of two kidnapped British soldiers. She battled for hours to save their lives, using her legal expertise, knowledge of Islam and Arabic to negotiate with their captors. After their release, her colleague received a Military Cross. Rabia received nothing. Her subsequent sex and race discrimination case against the British Army made headlines around the world. After leaving the army, she joined the Crown Prosecution Service as a prosecutor working on terrorism cases. Last year she returned to Perth to raise her triplet sons.

Her perspective as a feminist, a social justice crusader, a lawyer, a soldier, a former hostage, a terrorism prosecutor and a Muslim is unique, and her memoir is a story of grit, courage and conviction like no other.

 Grab a copy of Equal Justice here

7PM INTERVIEW: Kerry Stokes and Andrew Rule on Kerry Stokes: The Boy from Nowhere

It’s not every day you’re asked to interview a billionaire, especially one who has built a fortune from nothing, and who is feared and admired in equal measure. When Booktopia’s John Purcell sat across from Kerry Stokes and his biographer, Andrew Rule, there was a good chance John would faint. He was so nervous. But Kerry Stokes is not your typical billionaire. What happened next surprised John…

kerry-stokes-the-boy-from-nowhere

Kerry Stokes: The Boy from Nowhere

by Andrew Rule

The compelling and inspirational story of the rags to riches life of Kerry Stokes, a remarkable Australian.

Kerry Stokes is a remarkable Australian. Not because he is one of Australia’s wealthiest and most powerful people, but because of what he overcame to get there and because he has endured when others didn’t. His success and his rise have intrigued the business world for decades but there is so much more to him than multi-million dollar deals or mergers.

Behind the laconic front is a human story as tough and touching as a Dickens tale: Oliver Twist with great self-expectations. It is the story of a poor boy who stared down poverty, ignorance and the stigma of his illegitimate birth to achieve great wealth and fulfilment. He’s a backstreets battler who has become a power player. It’s a compelling and inspiring story that, until now, he has not told.

Now he oversees a multi-billion dollar media, machinery and property empire. He is renowned for his art collection and for philanthropy, spending millions of dollars to buy – among other things – Victoria Crosses from soldiers’ families to donate to the Australian War Memorial.

But he’s a private man. A man apart. He made his name in the West but kept his distance from the buccaneering band of entrepreneurs who forged fabulous fortunes in Perth from the 1960s until the 1987 crash. Bond went to jail, Holmes a Court died; Connell did both. Lesser lights flickered and faded but Stokes grew stronger, becoming a player alongside Murdoch, Packer and Lowy. His story fascinates all the more because he has spent most of his life guarding it. But now he’s telling it, to one of Australia’s great storytellers.

He is the boy who came from nothing, who had nothing to lose. And now he has everything. It’s a great Australian journey.

Click here to grab a copy or Kerry Stokes: The Boy from Nowhere

Samantha Armytage comes back to Booktopia to sign more of her bestselling book, Shine!

shine

Sam Armytage came back to Booktopia to sign more copies of SHINE because sales in the first week of publication have skyrocketed! This is turning out to be the book to buy for the young woman in your life. Looking for positive role model? Sam is the real deal.

Blurb: Shine is your chance to sit down with Samantha Armytage, co-host of Channel Seven’s top-rating Sunrise, where she takes you inside her world and the lessons she’s learned (and is still learning!) about life, career and relationships.

Samantha Armytage is most recognisable as co-host of Australia’s top rating morning show – Sunrise. Her journey to the famed TV couch hasn’t always been easy, but she’s been determined to make her dreams come true. In Shine, Sam reveals for the first time how she’s managed to keep her eye on the prize – both in work and in life. While the journey has sometimes been rocky, she’s kept her feet on the ground and her chin up high.

Shine is a collection of Sam’s best advice on dealing with everything life throws at you – including: – rising above negativity – setting goals – keeping fit & eating healthy – the importance of family – living with flair – being organised – having an open mind – being a woman of substance – running your own race. Shine shows that it’s possible to keep your goals in sight and your head on right!

You can order your signed copy of SHINE here – but only while stocks last  

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Check out our interview with Sam:

PHOTOS: Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt at the première of ‘Unbroken’

Big thanks to HarperCollins Australia for the invitations to the première of Angelina Jolie’s new film Unbroken. In particular Kelly Fagan and Kate Mayes. The film is based on the book, Unbroken by Laura Hillenbrand which is an account of the life of Louis Zamperini – Olympian, bombardier, castaway, prisoner of war and inspiration. Angelina Jolie directed and produced Unbroken which was filmed in NSW and Queensland, Australia.

Louis Zamperini’s life story is one of extraordinary hardship, which makes for some tense viewing, but his indomitable spirit leaves you cheering for each of his small victories. This is a movie for those who want to regain their faith in the human spirit and for those who just like a good movie.

Unbroken is on general release in Australia on 15th January 2015 which gives everyone time to… READ THE BOOK!

This slideshow requires JavaScript.


9780008108342Unbroken

by Laura Hillenbrand

The incredible true story of Louis Zamperini – Now a major motion picture

On a May afternoon in 1943, a US bomber crashed into the Pacific Ocean. After an agonising delay, a young lieutenant finally bobbed to the surface and struggled aboard a life raft.

So begins one of the most extraordinary odysseys of the Second World War. The lieutenant’s name was Louis Zamperini. As a boy, he turned to petty crime until he discovered a remarkable talent for running, which took him to the Berlin Olympics. But as war loomed, he joined up and was soon embroiled in the ferocious battle for the Pacific.

Now Zamperini faced a journey of thousands of miles of open ocean on a failing raft, dogged by sharks, starvation and the enemy. Driven to limits of endurance, Zamperini’s fate, whether triumph or tragedy, would depend on the strength of his will…

Grab a copy of Unbroken here

Adam Gilchrist plays Office Cricket at Booktopia HQ!

And who got him out? Watch the video and find out!

(PS: For a limited time, order your signed copy of Gilly’s illustrated memoir here)

adam-gilchrist-signed-copies-available-Adam Gilchrist

The Man, The Cricketer, The Legend

Going in first or seventh, wearing whites or colours, Adam Gilchrist was the most exhilarating cricketer of the modern age.

This is the most complete, intimate and fascinating illustrated autobiography of ‘Gilly’, one of the most loved sportsmen of his generation.

Featuring personal photographs, stories and precious keepsakes from Gilchrist’s private life and illustrious career, this book provides unprecedented access to Gilly, on and off the field. Peppered with anecdotes, reflections and jibes from friends, family and many of the biggest names in Australian and world cricket, this is the ultimate collection for sporting enthusiasts.

Grab a copy of Adam Gilchrist: The Man, The Cricketer, The Legend here

9781922213310-4 9781922213310-3

Grab a copy of Adam Gilchrist: The Man, The Cricketer, The Legend here

40 Years On: Prince Charles roasts Molly Meldrum

The Never, Um, Ever Ending Story:
Life, Countdown and Everything in Between

By: Ian ‘Molly’ Meldrum

the-never-um-ever-ending-storyMolly Meldrum’s warm, vivid, often hilarious and always compelling account of life in and out of Countdown.

More than thirty-five years in the making, this is the story of Ian ‘Molly’ Meldrum and the television show that stopped the nation.

In 1974 Ian ‘Molly’ Meldrum was working as a record producer and music journalist when he was offered the chance to host a new music show called Countdown. It was a show that would run for the next thirteen years and become one of the most-loved and most-watched programs on Australian television. It also turned Molly into a national institution (or ‘mental institution’ as one of his friends put it).

During that period he not only became the most influential voice in Australian music, he endeared himself to millions of viewers with a uniquely unpolished interviewing style and a tangible on-screen passion. For better or worse, whether interviewing Prince Charles or Sid Vicious, Molly was always Molly.

Along the way he talked, partied, argued, exchanged blows and became firm friends with a rollcall of the world’s greatest musical names.

Filled with outrageous anecdotes, an incredible cast of musos, deadbeats, transvestites and international superstars, The Never, Um, Ever Ending Story is Molly’s hilarious, vivid, warm and always compelling memoir of these incredible years.

Click here to grab a copy of The Never, Um, Ever Ending Story

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 14,635 other followers

%d bloggers like this: