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Publisher's Summary

Jimmy Connors is a working-man's hero, a people's champion who could tear the cover off a tennis ball, just as he tore the cover off the country-club gentility of his sport. A renegade from the wrong side of the tracks, Connors broke the rules with a radically aggressive style of play and bad-boy antics that turned his matches into prizefights. In 1974 alone, he won 95 out of 99 matches, all of them while wearing the same white shorts he washed in the sink of his hotel bathrooms. Though he lived the rock star life away from tennis, his enduring dedication to his craft earned him eight Grand Slam singles titles and kept him among the top ten best players in the world for sixteen straight years - five at number one.
In The Outsider, Connors tells the complete, uncensored story of his life and career, setting the record straight about his formidable mother, Gloria; his very public romance with America's sweetheart Chris Evert; his famous opponents, including Björn Borg, John McEnroe, Arthur Ashe, Ivan Lendl, and Rod Laver; his irrepressible co-conspirators Ilie Nastase and Vitas Gerulaitis; and his young nemesis Andre Agassi. Connors reveals how his issues with obsessive-compulsive disorder, dyslexia, gambling, and women at various times threatened to derail his career and his long-lasting marriage to Playboy Playmate Patti McGuire.
Presiding over an era that saw tennis attract a new breed of passionate fans - from cops to tycoons - Connors transformed the game forever with his two-handed backhand, his two-fisted lifestyle, and his epic rivalries.
The Outsider is a grand slam of a memoir written by a man once again at the top of his game - as feisty, unvarnished, and defiant as ever.
©2013 Jimmy Connors (P)2013 HarperCollins Publishers
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful
4 out of 5 stars
By mindnbody on 02-03-14

More humility than bravado

Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

Anyone who is familiar with the persona of Jimmy Connors on the court will likely be curious to know whether that was the real him or simply a PR stunt. By the end of the book, I concluded that (like most things in life) the answer is somewhere in-between. Connors readily admits to much of the hijinks that many of us witnessed in the 1970s and 80s, but provides some fairly raw admissions of poor decisions and actions. However, peppered in-between are several endearing accounts of the relationships that launched his career and/or accompanied him along the way. Truth is, I wasn't sure of the sincerity part until later in the book, when Mr. Connors spent a considerable amount of time acknowledging all those folks who'd supported him during his heyday: his fellow players, his family, even his dogs. I don't think an ego-maniac would devote so much attention to praising others (and admitting to his own failures) if there wasn't a healthy dose of sincerity and humility in there somewhere. Color me impressed.

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2 of 2 people found this review helpful

1 out of 5 stars
By Lakeside2chill on 10-05-15

Little character arc - but somewhat funny at times.

This book wasn’t for you, but who do you think might enjoy it more?

The tricky part is that I am a huge fan of autobiographies and I am a tennis nut, so I had high hopes for this one. In all fairness, before this book I read Andre Agassi's 'Open' autobiography, and that is a very, very tough act to follow as it was phenomenal; one of my favorites of all time. So for me, in a way, it was like the Connors v. Agassi match at the US Open, with Connors getting just destroyed, and then hearing Connors complain and take verbal jabs.

What could Jimmy Connors have done to make this a more enjoyable book for you?

Connors was funny at times throughout the book, but he mentions that people don't change. He was notorious for giving the finger to fans during a tennis match, yelling obscenities at the officials and bad mouthing his opponents, so imagine a whole book full of that. Admittedly, I was never a big Connors fan but wanted to give him the benefit of the doubt and hear his side of the story, his life, his personal story. However, there was little, if any, character arc.

Have you listened to any of Rich Orlow’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

The narrator did a great job.

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1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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