From Library Journal
LJ's reviewer found this "sordid saga of cheap hotels, cheap women, cheap dreams, and little or no fulfillment" to be "expertly written" (LJ 9/1/69). The plot finds palooka Billy Tully teaming up with a young would-be fighter who is destined to follow in Tully's footsteps.
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"Although the fight scenes are blood-curdlingly real enough, the tale is not about boxing: it is about desperate men doing the only thing they can do fighting at once to stay alive and to die. . . . Gardner's careful characterizing eye gleans apt images to build the stark reality of human beings on the aimless loose." -- Keith S. Felton, Los Angeles Times
"Gardner has laid claim to a locale that others have explored, but seldom with such accuracy and control . . . in a tone that is both detached and lyrical." -- New York Times Book Review