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Pain and Passion: The History of Stampede Wrestling Paperback – October 1, 2007


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 336 pages
  • Publisher: ECW Press; Revised edition edition (October 1, 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1550227874
  • ISBN-13: 978-1550227871
  • Product Dimensions: 6.4 x 0.8 x 9.1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (11 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,108,950 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

"I couldn't put the book down. . . . Brutally honest, its depth, getting into so many of the key personalities and stories, is amazing."  —Dave Meltzer, Wrestling Observer


"McCoy deftly resurrects the iconic status that Stu Hart's family once enjoyed among wrestling fans worldwide. . . . A wild blood-on-the-mat saga and a powerful drama that will captivate readers."  —Miami Herald



"I can't say enough good things about [this book]. This is easily one of the top five wrestling books of all time and I recommend everyone pick up a copy today and read it. You will love it just as much as I did."  —Online World of Wrestling


"Throughout the tale, you meet wild and wacky characters like the McGuire brothers tag team, who made the Guinness World Book of Records as the world's heaviest twins. . . . Or a guy who tried to drink Canada dry (not easy considering the size of Canada) and a man who kept a bear in his house until one day he forgot to lock the cage!"  —NY Daily News


"Riveting story detailing the rise, fall, and rebirth of the Hart wrestling dynasty."  —About.com



"An excellent read, well-researched, wonderfully written . . . and brutally honest, balanced and filled with real passion. . . .  A must-read."  —411mania.com



"[This] collection of stories has been widely considered as the most in-depth coverage of the territory."  —SLAM! Sports



"The title says it all and this book delivers."  —thefightnetwork.com

About the Author

Heath McCoy is a pop culture reporter and rock critic for the Calgary Herald. His coverage of Stampede Wrestling won a Western Canadian Magazine Award. He lives in Calgary, Alberta.

Customer Reviews

4.5 out of 5 stars
5 star
73%
4 star
18%
3 star
0%
2 star
9%
1 star
0%
See all 11 customer reviews
This book was extremely well written and researched for a wrestling book.
Luke
Any wrestling fan out there who loves to learn about the history of pro wrestling will love this book.
Nicholas R Annen
Also this book features great biographical details on the patriarch of the Hart family; Stu.
J.S. Hicks

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

9 of 10 people found the following review helpful By Brad from OWW on October 5, 2007
Format: Paperback
This is the October 2007 rerelease of one of the greatest wrestling books ever written. It was originally published two years ago, but ECW Press struck a deal to publish it once more with a brand new cover design and an additional bonus chapter focusing on various important Stampede-related developments. Author Heath McCoy brings us up-to-date on Bret Hart's WWE Hall of Fame induction, the uprising of the third generation Hart family members signing with the WWE and the horrific events that unfolded at the Benoit household on June 25, 2007 that became known as "Wrestling's Darkest Day."

To wrestling fans around the world, the city of Calgary represents the home base of a promotion known for producing some of the greatest stars the industry has ever seen. Men like "Dynamite Kid" Tom Billington, "British Bulldog" Davey Boy Smith, "Bad News" Allen Coage, "Flyin'" Brian Pillman, "The Rocket" Owen Hart, and of course WWE Hall of Famer Bret "The Hitman" Hart are at the top of the list of distinguished Stampede alumni. That list is long and glorious and full of big names that, even though did not achieve mega-stardom, played a dramatic role in one of the most under-rated and often-sheltered territories in the world of pro-wrestling. The show was run by one of the most beloved men in wrestling history, the tough-as-nails patriarch of the Hart family, Mr. Stu Hart. Along with his devoted wife, Helen, Stu assembled a roster of stars that prominently featured many of his own sons. The Hart family was the "heart" of the promotion, but the endless parade of heels that came in to face the Harts (and their allies) was definitely the blood that ran through its veins. Stampede was a promotion known for its heat, its pride, and its passion.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By R. Howell on June 10, 2008
Format: Paperback
"Pain & Passion" is a deep insight into Stampede Wrestling through it's transformations, growths, and declines. Stu Hart struck out on his own and created this territory business that would change from Klondike Wrestling into Stampede. This book is not just about Stampede Wrestling but obviously and naturally goes hand in hand with the history of the estranged Hart Clan. Family dynasties in wrestling have been strong such as the Guerreros and Von Erichs but none have come close to the dynasty of the Harts, whether it be Stu & Helen's twelve children or the extended families of in-laws, 'adopted' wrestlers, and grandkids.

The book starts off with Stu's parents and some of the ordeals they went through when he was a child and quickly moves into Stu's young life and establishing of his own wrestling franchise. We get a rich rundown of stories and personalities that flowed through Stampede, focusing well on the beginnings of Tom 'Dynamite Kid' Billington, before entering into the Hart family offspring. Here is why my rating is only 4 stars instead of 5. Once the story progresses to Bret and Owen, Stampede is left behind and the story focuses on Bret & Owen's success and journey through the WWF/E. From this point on there is less and less talk of Stampede and the book becomes a more focused biography of the Bret/Owen successes and then the Harts' hardships instead. It's difficult not to separate the two topics but from here on, there is little about Stampede itself. The unfortunate death of Owen then brings forth the division of the family and the legal battles which arose from it that nearly (and some may claim did) destroys the family. There are some fascinating stories regarding the Hart Dozen and you learn some interesting items regarding them.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By J.S. Hicks VINE VOICE on September 16, 2008
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I grew up in the deep south of the United States. Thus, wrestling wise, I grew up on Memphis, Continental, and NWA wrestling. I only knew of Stampede wrestling through the Apter magazines and was exposed to their top stars only when several came to the WWF in the mid-1980's.

Recently I read the awful Ring of Hell book which was an extremely unbalanced look at Stampede wrestling. As I discussed the book on my classic wrestling audio show at Wrestling Observer's website, several of my listeners recommended this book for a more complete view of the promotion.

They were right.

This is a fantastically well written book taking you from beginning to end. All the greats of Stampede wrestling are covered in great detail in this book including: Bret Hart, Owen Hart, Chris Benoit, the Mongolian Stomper, Bad News Allen, Davey Boy Smith, the Dynamite Kid, Bruce Hart, Keith Hart, David Schultz, the Honky Tonk Man, Andre the Giant, and much more. Also this book features great biographical details on the patriarch of the Hart family; Stu.

Heath McCoy has done the best job to date in summarizing the history of a classic wrestling promotion.

If you are a fan of any of the above mentioned wrestlers or just want to know more about classic Canadian wrestling or you want to read more about one of the most dysfunctional families in wrestling history then this is a must read.
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Rhythm Nation on March 31, 2008
Format: Paperback
Great book if you are interested in reading a wrestling book written very much like a historical text. The author is very comprehensive and detailed, alhough slightly biased at times, especially when comparing the Harts to outside entities. However this is a very meaty, pithy book with lots of new information in an age where regurgitation is the norm. Highly recommended for any wrestling fan who enjoys learning more about the subject.
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