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The Lives of Conn Smythe: From the Battlefield to Maple Leaf Gardens: A Hockey Icon's Story Hardcover – October 18, 2011


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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 384 pages
  • Publisher: FENN-M&S (October 18, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0771056834
  • ISBN-13: 978-0771056833
  • Product Dimensions: 6.3 x 1.2 x 9.3 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.5 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,350,790 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

"Kelly McParland... has offered hockey fans a truly remarkable book on the man who essentially built the Leafs we know and love, or hate, today. This piece of work [is] so special and great tribute to one of Canada's biggest icons." -- TheCheckingLine.com

About the Author

KELLY McPARLAND is a writer, editor and columnist at the National Post and a member of the newspaper's editorial board. He has worked for more than thirty years at newspapers and agencies in Canada, England, and Hong Kong. A lifelong Toronto Maple Leaf fan, he is old enough to remember the winning goal in the 1967 Stanley Cup, and young enough to live in hope of seeing the next one as well. He lives outside Toronto with his wife and daughter.

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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
For those of us who have a blue and white book shelf, and are intrigued with the storied history of both Maple Leaf Gardens and the Toronto Maple Leafs, I could not recommend Kelly McParland's work more highly. While the tales have been told by many different voices, no one has had clearer insight or more direct access to the source of knowledge since Scott Young worked directly with Conn Smythe. This book takes the tale a step beyond the sport's pages and peoples it with real characters, wonderfully fleshed out, weaving history, politics and sports together. Pitting them against the backdrop of a nation coming of age and searching for an identity, we can feel the cold, damp air of all those early rinks and smell the fresh paint piled layer upon layer in the Gardens. Reliving historic games and legendary moments is treated with a deft hand by this author. The book carries the ring of truth, and if you thought you knew all there was to know about Conn Smythe, there is still much to ponder about his complex and sometimes contradictory character. Future generations will gain a greater understanding of Toronto during the early years where we lived in divided societies, fearful and distrustful of one another. Yet through all the pain and blood, we grew to become a much more tolerant society, with our love for our national game, still intact. If you have a Leaf fan on your Christmas list, I would plan on putting this book on your list. If you are the reader, plan on giving yourself a weekend to do nothing else; unless, like me, you are happy to burn the midnight oil, too enthralled to close the covers and waste time sleeping.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
A wonderous biography of a sporting figure who is somewhat diminished by being a founding Canadian in a sport that is one of the smaller majors sports in the USA. The rise and accomplishments of Smythe as a businessman, sportsman in both hockey and horse racing, and soldier make for wonderful reading. The writers style is smooth and accomplished, and it makes for smooth if not easy reading.

Good biography brings to light not only a person's life but history unknown to the reader that causes furthe reading and research. While I was not surprised to find that Smythe had fought in both World Wars, I was surprised to find that his recognition and publicizing of Canadian "Conscription Crisis" brought down the government. This got me reading further, and discovered the Canadian government had similar issues in World War One.

Entertaining, Educational. Well written. Nicely done!
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The Lives of Conn Smythe: From the Battlefield to Maple Leaf Gardens: A Hockey Icon's Story
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