An Autobiography

Book - 2009 | 1st ed.
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From Andre Agassi, one of the most beloved athletes in history and one of the most gifted men ever to step onto a tennis court, a beautiful, haunting autobiography.

Agassi's incredibly rigorous training begins when he is just a child. By the age of thirteen, he is banished to a Florida tennis camp that feels like a prison camp. Lonely, scared, a ninth-grade dropout, he rebels in ways that will soon make him a 1980s icon. He dyes his hair, pierces his ears, dresses like a punk rocker. By the time he turns pro at sixteen, his new look promises to change tennis forever, as does his lightning-fast return.

And yet, despite his raw talent, he struggles early on. We feel his confusion as he loses to the world's best, his greater confusion as he starts to win. After stumbling in three Grand Slam finals, Agassi shocks the world, and himself, by capturing the 1992 Wimbledon. Overnight he becomes a fan favorite and a media target.

Agassi brings a near-photographic memory to every pivotal match and every relationship. Never before has the inner game of tennis and the outer game of fame been so precisely limned. Alongside vivid portraits of rivals from several generations--Jimmy Connors, Pete Sampras, Roger Federer--Agassi gives unstinting accounts of his brief time with Barbra Streisand and his doomed marriage to Brooke Shields. He reveals a shattering loss of confidence. And he recounts his spectacular resurrection, a comeback climaxing with his epic run at the 1999 French Open and his march to become the oldest man ever ranked number one.

In clear, taut prose, Agassi evokes his loyal brother, his wise coach, his gentle trainer, all the people who help him regain his balance and find love at last with Stefanie Graf. Inspired by her quiet strength, he fights through crippling pain from a deteriorating spine to remain a dangerous opponent in the twenty-first and final year of his career. Entering his last tournament in 2006, he's hailed for completing a stunning metamorphosis, from nonconformist to elder statesman, from dropout to education advocate. And still he's not done. At a U.S. Open for the ages, he makes a courageous last stand, then delivers one of the most stirring farewells ever heard in a sporting arena.

With its breakneck tempo and raw candor, Open will be read and cherished for years. A treat for ardent fans, it will also captivate readers who know nothing about tennis. Like Agassi's game, it sets a new standard for grace, style, speed, and power.
Publisher: New York, NY : A. Knopf, 2009.
Edition: 1st ed.
ISBN: 9780307268198
Characteristics: 385 p. : ill. ; 24 cm.


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Dec 19, 2017

I had no knowledge of, or interest in, either tennis or Andre Agassi prior to reading this book, but I couldn't put it down. A gritty, awe-inspiring, passionate and sometimes hilarious read that describes Agassi's legendary matches so vividly that you can almost feel the sweat on each page. Highly recommended.

Jul 12, 2016

Read this book after reading an article about Bjorn Borg being taken aback by the pressure tennis parents put on their kids. It was a little surprising to read that Agassi hated tennis pretty much throughout his career. His father is pretty much portrayed as a unrelenting tyrant. Agassi seems to spend a good amount of the book beating himself up and dwelling on his losses. Despite his hatred of tennis, it gave him financial security and international acclaim. The book follows his ill-fated marriage to Brooke Shields and his current marriage to Steffi Graf, as well as a few lifelong male confidants. An interesting and absorbing read.

Jul 31, 2015

this book/story is awesome! I t is written/told in a nice flowing and easy to understand the tennis lingo for the NON_tennis player. I couldn't put it down. definitely a must read.

modis01 Nov 20, 2014

Offers insight into the life of a tennis champion. Well written. An intriguing glimpse into Agassi's life.

Oct 10, 2014

From a high school tennis player point of view, this autobiography of Andre is very motivating. It has amazing story behind how the Andre Agassi became legendary. I like how his writing show me in clear picture of his real story and not the picture being paint by the media.

WVMLStaffPicks Aug 30, 2014

This autobiography of tennis great Andre Agassi is one of the best autobiographies I’ve ever read, and I don’t particularly like sports. Ably assisted by ghostwriter J.R. Moehringer, a Pulitzer Prize winner, Agassi hits a perfect autobiography combination of a man making peace with his inner demons mixed with just the right dash of celebrity scandal. Even if you never cheered for Agassi when he was playing tennis, you’ll be rooting for him by the end of the book.

Aug 26, 2013

Don't tend to read biographies, especially autobiographies, however I'm glad I ventured outside my tendencies for this one. Definitely a must-read for Agassi fans, tennis historians, and biography lovers. Tremendous blend of personal revelations, insider gossip, self-mythologizing, record straightening, and tennis match action from in the trenches. Loved it.

medpro Jul 27, 2013

Outstanding! You can just feel the pain, anguish, and exhiliration that Agassi endured, especially in the long, grueling matches toward the end of his career. His co-author, JR Moehringer, didn't want to receive credit, but was clearly responsible for this being so well written. Highly recommend Moehringer's touching book, The Tender Bar.

Jun 14, 2013

From the first few pages I knew I'd be staying up late to finish this one. Compelling stories, vivid retelling of matches and some interesting insight into his "rivals" as well.

And, if you read the acknowledgements, you will learn he had a ghostwriter. An amazing ghostwriter.

hdavi Nov 15, 2012

Best sports book ever. Fascinating!

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Sep 23, 2010

sahag thinks this title is suitable for 15 years and over


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