Blood Brothers

  • by Randy Roberts, Johnny Smith
  • Narrated by David Drummond
  • 13 hrs and 41 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook

Publisher's Summary

In 1962, boxing writers and fans considered Cassius Clay an obnoxious self-promoter, and few believed that he would become the heavyweight champion of the world. But Malcolm X, the most famous minister in the Nation of Islam - a sect many white Americans deemed a hate cult - saw the potential in Clay, not just for boxing greatness but as a means of spreading the Nation's message. The two became fast friends, keeping their interactions secret from the press for fear of jeopardizing Clay's career. Clay began living a double life - a patriotic "good Negro" in public and a radical reformer behind the scenes. Soon, however, their friendship would sour, with disastrous and far-reaching consequences.
Based on previously untapped sources, from Malcolm's personal papers to FBI records, Blood Brothers is the first book to offer an in-depth portrait of this complex bond. Acclaimed historians Randy Roberts and Johnny Smith reconstruct the worlds that shaped Malcolm and Clay, from the boxing arenas and mosques to postwar New York and civil rights-era Miami.


What the Critics Say

"A page-turning tale from the 1960s about politics and sports and two proud, extraordinary men whose legacies endure." (Kirkus)


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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

Interesting story

Littered with little known facts, this story drags along to its ultimate end. The author seems to mix these truths with his biased opinions.
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- Amazon Customer

Interesting take on a 5-year period in two famous lives

There are a lot of books, movies and other sources out there on these two men, but this is the story of five tumultuous years that they were at the center of. Definitely offers a new take - and, in part, a takedown - of their lives. Certainly an expose of rampant corruption and criminality within the NOI. The author accuses the NOI of orchestrating Malcolm X's murder and also hints at some complicity on the part of the FBI.

I thought that the narration was good overall, but with a couple major flaws that were annoying. This is a well-done production, the producers and narrator should make sure that they are pronouncing words correctly, including Accra (e-krah, emphasis on the second syllable) and reporter Dick Schaap's last name, rhymes with chap not chop. Finally, imitating Ali is always fraught with peril and the narrator has to attempt it on several occasions. As Ali's onetime fight doctor Ferdie Pacheco once said, "if you say it, you sound childish; if he says it's funny."

Other than those minor problems a worthwhile listen.
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- J. A. Walsh

Book Details

  • Release Date: 03-08-2016
  • Publisher: Tantor Audio