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Dr. J: The Autobiography Hardcover – November 5, 2013


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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 448 pages
  • Publisher: Harper (November 5, 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0062187929
  • ISBN-13: 978-0062187925
  • Product Dimensions: 6 x 1.4 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.6 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (101 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #154,962 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Booklist

If not the greatest basketball player of all time, Julius Erving was the first and best at bringing the playground to the pro game. In the early 1970s, when Erving burst onto the national scene with the American Basketball Association Virginia Squires, he was a revelation. Every game was its own Dr. J highlight reel of swooping dunks and twisting layups. After the ABA merged with the NBA, Erving secured a larger audience with the Philadelphia 76ers and eventually a spot in the Hall of Fame. In between the dunks, life happened, and that’s what Erving has put down on paper in this revealing, insightful autobiography. He states early and often that he is a flawed man. The sexual temptations of fame were irresistible to him, damaging the serious relationships in his life and even producing a child, tennis player Alexandra Stevenson. Personal tragedy exacted a toll, too, with early death taking several family members. There’s enough basketball here to keeps fans interested, but the book isn’t really about what happens on the court. It’s about a thoughtful man who, for a time in his youth, was a famous athlete. A rewarding reading experience. --Wes Lukowsky

Review

“A deeply personal and almost shockingly honest book.” (New York Daily News)

“There’s enough basketball here to keeps fans interested, but the book isn’t really about what happens on the court. It’s about a thoughtful man who, for a time in his youth, was a famous athlete. A rewarding reading experience.” (Booklist)

“The book is quite an accomplishment: a terrific memoir by a man worthy of one.” (Sports Illustrated)

“The NBA’s most transformative player submits an unusually revealing autobiography.” (Kirkus Reviews)

Customer Reviews

Very interesting story.
Lynn Smith
Probably the best sports autobiography I have ever read, and I have read a lot of them.
Edward Saxon
Dr. J should run for president.
Stephen A Miller

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
“I believe that while what I achieved is only possible in the United States, my faults are my own, singular and personal…”

“I am a husband, trying and not always succeeding to live up to vows of fidelity amid the seductions of celebrity and fame…”

“I am an American man whose journey has been blessed by the great gifts that America offers… wealth, fame, championships, awards… and also scoured by the tragedies that are a part of the human experience. I have lost too many loved ones.”

“I ask for no pity; I only want to relate what I have felt and seen.”

“I have hurt too many people.”

“For that I ask forgiveness.”

---------------------
The above words are a partial excerpt from Julius Erving’s preface. These heartfelt and ego-free sentiments… will provide the reader with a notice that you’re about to read a sports autobiography that comes from a much different shelf… than the overflowing one filled with mindless… me… me… mantra… of countless athletes.

As the story begins in childhood… the reader at first will think that the writing has an “infantile” feel to it… then as it continues… you’ll slowly start to realize… that the telling of the story is as if you’re actually inside young “June” (Julius’s nickname with family members… short for Junior)… and you’re actually looking through his eyes… you even feel as if you’re his size… as he continues to jump… and jump.. and jump… trying to be able to look out the window in his home. The love between all members of the Erving family is both touching and nostalgic. The lessons that come along with the love from “The Doctor’s” Mother… reminds you of the way America used to be… and at least the way you wish it to be now.
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15 of 18 people found the following review helpful By Edward Saxon on November 6, 2013
Format: Hardcover
Probably the best sports autobiography I have ever read, and I have read a lot of them. It's a page turner and really emotional. It gave me a lot of insights into the man, the times, and especially, the game. I bought 5 of 'em to give to the ballers I play with. Just great.
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17 of 21 people found the following review helpful By MAXIMILLIAN MUHAMMAD HALL OF FAME on November 5, 2013
Format: Hardcover
DR J WAS poetry in the air and truly one of a kind. He is one of the Greatest Basketball Players and also a very down to earth Brother. no matter what the term you use, be it Swag, Cool, Cold, Smooth Dr J was that cat who had it like that. now this Book Covers his Career and what happen off the court, various Ups and downs and what shaped up his life then and now. he left a mark on and off the court. He was a Black SuperStar in an Era where there weren't a whole lot as you have now. he broke alot of Ground. Doc was so Badd He made the NBA come to him and Bring him there. Michael Jordan, Dominique Wilkens, Vince Carter, Kobe Bryant, Dwayne wade, Lebron James amongest others owe a debt to the Greatness and Ground Breaking Player that Dr J Julius Erving was.

very detail and very compelling and One of those books that allows you in to his world and you learn so much more.
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful By MovieLover on December 15, 2013
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Julius Erving, "Dr. J," was an ABA and NBA legend. He was given
good values by his mother and sister. His parents were divorced
& he seldom saw his father,"Tank," named after a favorite card
game.

Dr. J passed up cigarettes, alcohol(seldom used), drugs, gangs.
In favor of his vision of his future as a college graduate who
becomes a businessman. He accomplished these goals with a few
barriers along the way.

It was heart-wrenching to read about his brother Marky, sister
Freda & son Cory who all died too soon.

Dr J. praised the skills of his coaches & other basketball greats.
Such as Bill Russell, "Pistol" Pete Maravich, Magic Johnson, Larry
Bird, Moses Malone etc. He mentioned one pro basketball player,
Billy Ray Bates, described as "an amazing athletic specimen" but
illiterate. No details were offered. Was Bates just passed from
one grade to the next? Did he "graduate" high school? "Graduate"
college? Erving kept his cool under stress. Imagine playing in
front of 17,000+ fans!!

Erving was involved in a court case for being committed to 3 pro
teams!!

Erving was honest about his strengths & times he was imperfect.
But he rationalized having 2 "outside" babies, by 2 women other
than his wife. Either be married or single- just choose one!!!

Edited to add ideas.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Lauren Ukkerd on December 29, 2013
Format: Kindle Edition
This was an excellent book. I grew up watching Dr. J when he played with the Sixers along with Mo Cheeks, Moses Malone, Bobby Jones, Andrew Toney, etc., so it was interesting to read his story from childhood to adulthood, through his basketball career and after his retirement. The book was so interesting and entertaining because I felt as though Dr. J. was being very honest and thorough with his life. He did not try to hide his mistakes or transgressions and he admitted when he did things wrong. It was also interesting because it gives the reader a true insight into how a pro athlete has to live their lives with all the fame and fortune that comes along with being a famous and rich athlete. The book also gives you an inside view of the difference between the pros of Dr. J.'s era who worked hard, didn't complain and busted their butts in the games as opposed to the young players of today. This book reminded me of why I loved the NBA back in the 60's, 70's, and 80's and less so today. I would highly recommend this book to any basketball fan and especially anyone who grew up in the Dr. J. era.
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