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A-Rod: The Many Lives of Alex Rodriguez Hardcover – Bargain Price, May 4, 2009
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Important ... devastating ... merciless. (New York Times )
We learn many of Rodriguez’s secrets in Roberts’s meticulously reported psychological profile… (New York Times )
About the Author
Selena Roberts, formerly a columnist for the New York Times, is a senior writer for Sports Illustrated. She lives in Connecticut.
More About the Author
Top Customer Reviews
If you dislike the Yankees or dislike players that sign long-term contracts for great sums of money, then you'll probably enjoy this book. If you're fairly neutral on both fronts (as I am), then this book won't cast a very long shadow upon your life.
There are two main problems with the book. First, it's abundantly clear that Selena Roberts personally dislikes Alex Rodriguez. She's certainly entitled to feel this way, but this should not come through in a book that is supposed to be the product of serious journalism. Second (and this is connected with the first) Rodriguez's use of steroids is this book's raison d'etre. It's as though Roberts said to herself, "Yes! We caught him using banned substances, now I can write that book."
The rather superficial picture of Rodriguez we get is of a guy who will do anything to win, including making use of stolen signs and performance enhancing drugs. Why does he do this? Roberts lacks the gravitas to tell us. Rodriguez's dad left when he was 10 years old and he was understandably affected by this. But beyond needing approval from others and missing his dad while growing up, how exactly did it affect him? We're never told. Roberts' failure in this regard shouldn't come as a surprise. Her bibliography is mostly composed of magazine and newspaper articles with comparatively few interviews.
Nearly everything in the book is told through the prism of Rodriguez's use of steroids or is only mentioned because it relates directly to steroids.Read more ›
Even with her past, I was interested to read the book in the hopes that she would do some real reporting and have some real facts to back up the sordid stories. It turns out that we knew most of what she had hard core evidence to prove months ago, and the rest comes from anonymous sources and pure speculation. Given her past history of making up facts in order to sell a story, I'm a little leery.
If you're a baseball fan, I would suggest reading it. If nothing else it's pretty juicy gossip for your bathroom reading time. If you're looking for well-researched facts and good investigative journalism, keep looking. This is the National Enquirer of sports books. Sure it might be true. Some of it actually seems probable. But who knows if it's really true or not? Unfortunately, Ms. Roberts' past reputation and the lack of hard evidence presented in this book cannot answer that question.
That said, I think Selena Roberts had some interesting points. I'm sure it is difficult enough being a female sports journalist without attempting a stark portrait of the highest paid player in the game. However, I thought she interjected her own thoughts and persona far too much. I didn't need to see the "character" Selena Roberts show up at A-Rod's house, and hear how she interviewed his father. Those were somewhat amateurish scenes that a professional writer should be far beyond. With that, I thought she quoted too heavily from Jose Canseco's "Juiced." If I had wanted to know what he thought about A-Rod and steroid use in MLB, I would have purchased his book - but since I don't care what he has to say, I really didn't like having those longer passages from his book quoted.
I know this book has come under criticism as not having enough sources, and I can see where that might be a problem. However, I did think that she spoke to and named several people who seemed to know Alex very well who were willing to go on the record to speak to his alleged steroid use and his philandering behavior.
In the end, the book dragged on too long at parts, and wasn't nearly the scathing criticism I thought it would be. Roberts shows sympathy for the man in some respects (boy abandoned early on by adored father), but doesn't make the extra effort to delve beneath the surface and show the true man he has become. Maybe she's saving more for a follow up book that goes beneath the surface.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
I found the book to be a tad boring, and repetitive. The subject matter is predictable, and its only saving grace is it gives a decent background of Mr. Read morePublished 19 months ago by Michael J. Mclaughlin
Very informative, yet not an easy read. I, like many others enjoyed watching Rodriguez come through the ranks. A great athlete who seems to have lost is way. Read morePublished 23 months ago by Lisa K.Diedrick
I don't think too highly of this book in general. The author clearly seemed to have it in for Alex Rodriguez from page one. Read morePublished on August 25, 2013 by Matthew Davidson
This book reads exactly like what it is--the extension of a piece of journalism. Most journalism cares nothing about history and, possibly, even less about culture. Read morePublished on August 18, 2013 by Roderick T. Leupp
I read "A-Rod" because I wanted to learn more about him now that he has been caught doping a second time. Read morePublished on August 11, 2013 by Tyler Bridges
The author at times goes out of her way to connect a seemingly unrelated story back to steroids and it is clear throughout that she has an agenda against Arod. Read morePublished on March 17, 2013 by Ryan Baney
A comprehensive book about A-Rods history of PED use ,you would think, would be wildly popular right now. Read morePublished on March 1, 2013 by Khan Sing
This book is a decent. While I definitely did learn a lot about Arods life and career, I felt that many parts were written as one long gossip article. Read morePublished on December 26, 2012 by Brooklyn Joe