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I'm Sorry, I Love You

A History of Professional Wrestling
Narrated by: Jim Smallman
Length: 11 hrs and 48 mins
Categories: Sport, Other
4.5 out of 5 stars (182 ratings)

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Summary

For fans of books from Chris Jericho, Steve Austin, Daniel Bryan, Mick Foley and Jim Ross. 

'We have all felt every emotion today. Remember today, the next time a family member or workmate tells you that wrestling is stupid. We've laughed, we've cried, we've screamed our lungs out. Professional wrestling is the greatest thing in the entire world.' - Jim Smallman, 2016  

Comedian and PROGRESS Wrestling founder Jim Smallman takes us on a wild ride through the history of pro-wrestling, from its beginnings at the turn of the 20th century to the pop-culture, pay-per-view juggernaut that it is today.

Join Jim as he looks at the most defining and iconic moments in wrestling's history and attempts to nail down just why this ludicrous, over the top, compelling quasi-sport means so much to so many people.

©2018 Jim Smallman (P)2018 Headline Publishing Group Ltd

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  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars

A Book of Two Halves

This book started so promisingly. Jim had clearly done his research on the beginnings of pro-wrestling and was able to deliver a both informative and entertaining lesson on wrestling before my lifetime. By the half way point I was thoroughly enjoying myself and recommending the book to both wrestling fans and non-wrestling fans alike.

Unfortunately it all changed there, with the second half of the book becoming far more of a history of WWF/E programming during their key eras and focused too much on the minutiae of wrestling's major boom during the Attitude Era. As a lifelong WWE fan, I wasn't able to learn anything at this point. I found myself eager for the end of the book to come around and wondering who this part of the book was really targeted towards - most WWE fans will already know this stuff and most indie-wrestling fans won't care.

I especially enjoyed Jim touching upon Japanese, Mexican and British wrestling during the 70's and 80's and was hugely disappointed that this was not carried on through the 90's and 2000's. It felt a bit like Jim got bored of researching and decided to just write the rest of the book from memory.

Being a podcaster and public performer, Jim's narration is very good. His passion and respect for wrestling and love of those goosebump-moments wrestling fans know well really shines through. Jim did use the book to say a few things to obviously irritating wrestling / twitter fans which felt a bit unnecessary and out of place, but probably raised a smile from his multitude of friends in the business, of which we learn there are many.

I could forgive Jim's name-dropping and his repeating of certain stories or facts. I can even overlook his bias during his "Jim's Top 10" lists - they are subjective afterall. Combining this with the lack of real original content during the second half of the book made the whole thing fall a bit flat for me, which was a real shame after such an interesting first half of the book.

6 people found this helpful

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Basic for the Hardcore Fan, good for new fans

As a longtime fan, I found the info in this audiobook very basic. I didn't learn anything I didn't already know, which was a bit disappointing.

I would highly recommend this for casual fans. If you are a longtime wrestling fan, I would go elsewhere.

1 person found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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From the heart

Written and narrated by comedian and PROGRESS Wrestling co-owner Jim Smallman, this is not a complete history of professional wrestling, but more his history of wrestling, how he fell in and out of love with the sport (entertainment). Reading his own book you can really tell how much wrestling and this book means to Jim, he expresses his emotions in such details, many wrestling fans would never open up about over the last few years. If you're a fan of wrestling, or wondered what it's all about (and It's much more than something fake), then this book will take you on a personal journey through ones fans perspective across 30 years.

1 person found this helpful

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i love Jim Smallman

I love Jim Smallman and hearing him read this book is great. I love his accent and the way this gets into all different types of wrestling. GET THIS BOOK

1 person found this helpful

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Incredible

if there's one thing I love more than wrestling, it's the history, politics and behind the curtain stories that come with it. Jim covered a lot of ground with ease and left enough to inspire a jump down several rabbit holes myself

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excellent history of pro wrestling

funny narration and a very easy listen. I learnt a lot that I didnt know and would recommend highly

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a feat for the ears

Even if you have a full background of the wrestling scenes over the years, this audiobook will surprise you with tales that you can only believe to be tall. from the background of the territories on the USA to the conception of New Japan, it's all covered.

Read perfectly also. Only thing I don't understand is about sandwiches.

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Riveting Account of Wrestling History

Smallman has done a fantastic job translating his love of wrestling across the industry, reaching far back to the early years of the sport, to a territorial powerhouse and then a worldwide phenomenon. The book doesn't just cover American wrestling as there are juicy insights into British and Japanese wrestling as well. The only real niggling dinger is Smallman mispronouncing names-yes it's just his accent foibles, but they're noticeable and numerous throughout.

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Good, but flawed in some points.

Interesting read, the narrators voice is great but it is not a “history” in the true sense, the authors biases are extremely clear which is fine, it’s his book and his opinion.

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A good insight

I really enjoyed this book. A great history that goes beyond just opinion. I thought the narration was great and you get a real sense of passion for wrestling.
What I particularly liked is that it wasn't just about WWE, but the whole wrestling platform worldwide.
I found sometimes It jumped about (especially the random top 10s), but all in all this is a good book for the collection.
I'd definitely recommend this if you a looking for a wrestling book.

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  • Josh Armstrong
  • 02-11-18

Worth a listen

Good book and really well read by the author. Origins of pro wrestling was really interesting.

1 person found this helpful