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Pete Maravich: The Authorized Biography of Pistol Pete Paperback – September 1, 2008

4.6 out of 5 stars 18 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From Booklist

The late Pete Maravich is a basketball legend. He averaged more than 44 points a game in his career at Louisiana State University—before the advent of the three-point shot—and 24 during his NBA career. But more than his scoring was his passing. He was inarguably the most spectacular, creative passer in the history of the game. Pete was the son of a successful coach, Press Maravich, and neighbors recall young Pete hanging out of a car window, dribbling, while his dad drove slowly around the side streets, gradually picking up speed. Federman and Terrill recount Maravich’s playing career in entertaining fashion, though the sheer number of game accounts is numbing. As for the personal Pete, they come to many of the same conclusions as Mark Kriegel did in his masterful 2006 biography, Pistol—that success on the basketball court did not translate to happiness. It was only after his career was over that he found contentment in Evangelical Christianity and working with kids. This isn’t quite the polished piece of work that Kriegel’s book is, but it offers an evenhanded treatment of all aspects of Maravich’s life. --Wes Lukowsky
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 459 pages
  • Publisher: Focus on the Family; 1st edition (September 1, 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1589975359
  • ISBN-13: 978-1589975354
  • Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 1.1 x 8.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (18 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #176,667 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
OK, I read the hard-cover version of this book (Maravich) a couple years back and found it - far and away - the most comprehensive and informative book ever written on the Pistol (and I've read them all).

This is basically the paperback version of that book but with an added forward by James Dobson. Yes, THAT James Dobson. He was with Pete the day he died. (Focus on the Family published this version - which doesn't bother me but I won't be lending it to my sister.)

What sets Pete Maravich: The Authorized Biography of Pistol Pete apart is the astonishing detail of every aspect of Pete's life (Pennsylvania, the Carolinas, LSU, the NBA, Christianity, and his legacy). For example - there's an entire chapter on Pete's year at prep-school (Southwood College) and another on his failed attempt to make the 1968 Olympic basketball team.

It was written with the full co-operation of the Maravich family and it shows. The private letters from Pete to his wife and boys are beautiful and heart-breaking.

My only complaint is that Ronnie Maravich is referred to as Pete's "step" brother when, in fact, he was Pete's "half" brother.

This is the book (along with the CBS documentary) that future historians will resource when chronicling his life. ESPN called it "The definitive biography of Pistol Pete Maravich." The NY Times called it the "essential biography of Pete Maravich."

It's that and so much more.
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Pete Maravich was undoubtedly one of the most talented basketball players ever. But he also was one of the unhappiest, most tortured and least appreciated players ever.

Authors Wayne Federman and Marshall Terrill do an admirable job of chronicling Maravich's life in this authorized biography. If you have read Pistol by Mark Kriegel, you can still learn a lot from reading this biography. Federman and Terrill include more details about his career, taking the reader year-by-year. I think you can appreciate Maravich's talents even more in this book.

Although Maravich's main goal was to play on a NBA championship team, it was one he never sadly never fulfilled. He began his pro career with the Atlanta Hawks as the NBA's Great White Hope after a storied college career at LSU. He was resented and ridiculed for his showmanship. After four frustrating years in Atlanta, he was traded to the New Orleans Jazz, an expansion team, where he was expected to be the savior. He finally ended his career with the Boston Celtics, where he didn't receive as much playing time as he expected.

Perhaps Spencer Haywood, who played with Maravich, summed up Pete's career best:
"Pete is my pick as the most talented guard and the most misunderstood soul ever to play the game. The rap on Pete is that he was selfish, wasn't a team player. Completely untrue. He had unbelievable skills, he could score on anyone. But he loved to pass the ball, too, to involve his teammates in the offense. He never played on a great team, however, so the scoring burden always fell on him--along with the reputation of being a gunner."

Former teammate Lou Hudson reflected another opinion of Pete: "Raw-talent wise, he's the greatest who ever played the game.
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The story is well told and engages your interest. I did get the feeling that the authorized nature of the biography interfered with the telling of the whole story. There is little mention of Pistol's drinking problems and occasional wild behavior. Aside from a feeling of not receiving the entire story, the book was quite enjoyable.
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Excellent book to read about the greatest basketball player ever. The author details exact moments in Pete's life and leaves out nothing. I've read other books about Pete and this is the best about telling how Pete worked harder than anybody in basketball and dedicate himself to the sport. He deserves to be a true legend.
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Format: Paperback
After reading this book I was surprised to learn about many details I did not previously know about Pistol in both the early years as well as the later years. I did not know the depth of his convictions once he found the meaning in his life and his true calling. I really felt like I was able to truly understand Pistols struggles and ultimate triumphs. A very truthful yet uplifting and hopeful account of a great athlete and a great man.
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I read this book in high school and forgot what a great book it is especially for those of us who are basketball enthusiast. Book as described, fast shipping, reasonable shipping cost will buy again
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I have been a big fan of Pete Maravich as we are ;the same age, and I loved his work ethic and his father's too
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By Susan K. on December 13, 2014
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Very good price for an amazing story!
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