The Barfighter

Ivan G. Goldman, Author . Permanent $28 (246p) ISBN 978-1-57962-182-7

Goldman (Where the Money Is ) brings to life the sleazy underbelly of professional boxing in the 1980s, where double crosses, thievery and cheating were commonplace. After instigating a bar brawl that leads to his arrest, former army-trained boxer and journalist Lee Cheskis lands in anger management class. There he meets Marvin, the former gangbanger who is desperate to box. Lee introduces Marvin to Eddie, the salty old boxing trainer and gym owner, who discovers that Marvin is a natural. As Marvin works his way up from small auditoriums to big arenas, it becomes obvious just how seedy and disreputable the boxing world really is as fighters, fights and allegiances are easily bought and sold. Goldman's ear for dialogue and snappy pace make this latest an entertaining read, and boxing fans may recognize some of the sport's famous personalities as inspirations for the characters. Though the boxing-as-salvation story is nothing new, readers will root for this little band of misfits to succeed against the odds. (Apr.)

Reviewed on: 12/15/2008
Release date: 04/01/2009
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