The Professional

The Professional

List Price: $ 16.95

Price: $ 16.95

Product Features

  • The Professional

Product Description

Originally published in 1958, The Professional is the story of boxer Eddie Brown's quest for the middleweight championship of the world. But it is so much more. W. C. Heinz not only serves up a realistic depiction of the circus-like atmosphere around boxing with its assorted hangers-on, crooked promoters, and jaded journalists, but he gives us two memorable characters in Eddie Brown and in Brown's crusty trainer, Doc Carroll. They are at the heart of this poignant story as they bond together wit

Find More Professional Boxers Products

3 Comments
  1. Reply Tyler Smith September 12, 2017 at 10:18 am
    3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
    5.0 out of 5 stars
    A sports classic, March 2, 2013
    By 
    Tyler Smith (Denver, CO United States) –
    (REAL NAME)
      

    Verified Purchase(What’s this?)
    This review is from: The Professional (Paperback)
    Getting cover hype from Ernest Hemingway could be a curse if the writer on the receiving end of the praise isn’t able to deliver, but W.C. Heinz answers the bell decisively in this very fine novel. And I leave the modifier “sports” off deliberately. It’s an excellent novel — period.

    Told from the perspective of a sportwriter developing a magazine piece on a fighter, Eddie Brown, training for a championship bout, The Professional gives us a day-to-day look at boxers preparing for the ring. The writer wants to live his subject’s life to the greatest extent possible, so he spends all his time in camp with Eddie and his manager, the memorably crusty Doc Carroll. We get the drudgery and hard work of training, the talk of strategy, jokes and gamesmanship and most of all the stories of the past, all told in a finely controlled narrative voice that jabs and snaps. The writer, Frank Hughes, is as cynical as they come, but he’s drawn to fighters because their calling, in his view, is to face irreducible truth found in the boxing ring, a place where there is no escape from the finality of victory or defeat. And Heinz brings a fine air of tension to it all, particularly in his portray of Doc, who we know is probably getting a final shot at producing a champion.

    In a very few places, the prose becomes overwrought, mostly when Frank attempts to articulate his love of boxing. But those passages are more than made up for by the fine, spare descriptive lines, the dryly humorous interactions and the moments of emotion unsullied by sentimentality, most notably the scenes surrounding the death of Eddie’s trainer, Jay. These characters are not ones to put their hearts on their sleeves, yet Heinz believably transmits their sense of loss.

    I must say I was disappointed by the end, which of course I won’t spoil here, not because it was badly written but because it didn’t match what I was expecting. But others may disagree. Decide for yourself. The Professional is one solid knockout.

    Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 

    Was this review helpful to you? Yes
    No

  2. Reply Reader September 12, 2017 at 10:24 am
    5.0 out of 5 stars
    A Classic Story, Uniquely Told, April 4, 2016
    By 
    Andrew S. Niemyer (Duluth, MN USA) –
    (REAL NAME)
      

    Verified Purchase(What’s this?)
    Sixty years old, this remains one the very finest, best told boxing novels ever written. Using a first-person point of view, The Professional uses clear and characters distinctive dialogues to not only carry the vast burden of the story but also to give us the cadences, feel and distinct nature of every character in the story, from the narrator, a journalist covering fighter Eddie Brown through to the most minor of characters.

    Set in the few weeks leading up to and including a title bout, the author,himself a veteran sports writer, paints as clear a portrait of the endless hours of work, discipline, and thought that go into what is required of anyone who takes up the gloves, either as amateur or pro and sets out into the ring. As much character study as anything,the action in the story is saved for the final pages, yet the pace is well timed by the conversations between the many fighters, managers and trainers who populate the story.

    I read few novels set around sports, but this one rewards anyone who picks thus book up. A well deserved 5 stars

    Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 

    Was this review helpful to you? Yes
    No

  3. Reply Anonymous September 12, 2017 at 11:12 am
    2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
    3.0 out of 5 stars
    Beware that Elmore Leonard’s forward contains SPOILERS, October 11, 2015
    By 
    Reader

    Verified Purchase(What’s this?)
    This review is from: The Professional (Paperback)
    A good book and worth reading, but beware that Elmore Leonard’s forward gives away the ending in citing a passage from the original New Yorker review. I was disappointed knowing generally how the book would end. It is a heartfelt, personal essay by Leonard — I just think it belongs at the back of the book. Heinz’s novel, almost 60 years after its original publication, remains fresh and relevant.

    Those who enjoyed “The Professional” might also like “The Hustler” by Walter Tevis.

    Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 

    Was this review helpful to you? Yes
    No

Leave a reply