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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 592 pages
  • Publisher: Blue Rider Press (November 12, 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0399161287
  • ISBN-13: 978-0399161285
  • Product Dimensions: 9.1 x 6.3 x 2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.8 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (262 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #7,240 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Booklist

Sharing a title with Tyson’s limited-run one-man Broadway show (soon to air on HBO), this outspoken autobiography simultaneously confirms many of our preconceptions about the celebrity boxer and smashes some of them. Although he came out of poverty and family strife, and although he was following a criminal path at a very early age (he was robbing houses when he was still a preteen and sent to a state reformatory at age 12), and although schooling took a backseat to his fighting career (which also started when he was very young), Tyson does not come across as the semiliterate thug he’s so often represented to be. Most readers are familiar with his tumultuous life and career—the bizarre behavior in the ring, the sordid behavior out of it—but what’s most surprising about the book is the introspection and self-awareness displayed by this self-proclaimed “trailer park nigga.” Leaving aside the question of how much of the actual writing was done by coauthor Sloman—who’s collaborated on several other noteworthy books, including a couple with Howard Stern—it’s clear that the voice is Tyson’s: it’s raw and profane but also smart and witty. Different people have different opinions of Tyson, but he seems to know who he is, and he appears to be OK with that. A fascinating and frequently surprising autobiography. --David Pitt

Review

Praise for UNDISPUTED TRUTH

“A masterpiece … grimly tragic on one page, laugh-out-loud funny on the next, and unrelentingly vulgar and foul-mouthed. Reading Tyson's memoir is like watching a Charles Dickens street urchin grow up to join Hunter S. Thompson on a narcotics-filled road trip — with the ensuing antics captured on video by assorted paparazzi.” –Hector Tobar, Los Angeles Times

Undisputed Truth is raw, powerful and disturbing—a head-spinning take on Mr. Tyson's life…Unlike other sports memoirists, he doesn't pull punches, offering up slashing comments on people who were once close to him. His narrative reminds us of just how far he has come from his rough beginnings, and, in a way, how close he remains to them. He had a punch like a thunderbolt from Zeus, but there have been a lot of big bangers in boxing; Mike Tyson's came with a pulsating story line like few others.” --Gordon Marino, Wall Street Journal

“Parts of [Undisputed Truth] read like a real-life Tarantino movie. Parts read like a Tom Wolfe-ian tour of wildly divergent worlds: from the slums of Brooklyn to the high life in Las Vegas to the isolation of prison…. Mr. Tyson’s idiosyncratic voice comes through clearly on the page here — not just his mix of profane street talk and 12-step recovery language, cinematic descriptions of individual fights and philosophical musings, but also his biting humor and fondness for literary and historical references that run the gamut from Alexandre Dumas to Tolstoy to Lenin to Tennessee Williams…. A genuine effort by a troubled soul to gain some understanding of the long, strange journey that has been his life.” –Michiko Kakutani, The New York Times

“A hefty autobiography that might be the most soul baring book of its genre ever written … a fascinating look into a life that up until now had already been well chronicled … It’s raw and profane … but it is also quite funny.”—Associated Press
 
Undisputed Truth, which is, without a doubt, one of the grittiest and most harrowing memoirs I’ve ever read.” –Flavorwire

“Most readers are familiar with [Tyson’s] tumultuous life and career—the bizarre behavior in the ring, the sordid behavior out of it—but what’s most surprising about the book is the introspection and self-awareness displayed … it’s raw and profane but also smart and witty … A fascinating and frequently surprising autobiography.”—Booklist
 
Undisputed Truth, is the American dream writ large in raw detail: think Citizen Kane scripted by the writing team of The Wire…. [it] has a great American novel feel to it… Tyson could easily be a Tom Wolfe or Norman Mailer creation.” –Austin Collings, New Statesman

“[A] lively mixture of a memoir.” –Joyce Carol Oates, New York Review of Books

“Tyson was ever practised at delivering the early killer blow; and so it is with this gripping and indecently enthralling autobiography….Tyson always had a way with words – although much of the credit for this book must go to his ghostwriter Larry “Ratso” Sloman, who not only makes Tyson’s life read like an Elmore Leonard thriller, but gifts him with considerable self-awareness and a memorably pithy turn of phrase….recounted in gripping, punch-by-punch detail in prose pungent with the reek of blood, sweat and petroleum jelly.” –Mick Brown, The Telegraph (UK)

“Thrilling…addictive…Sloman brings Tyson's voice springing off the page with its often hilarious combo of street and shrink, pimp profanity and the ‘prisony pseudo-intellectual modern mack rap’ of the autodidact.” –Geoff Dyer, The Guardian (UK)

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Customer Reviews

Mike Tyson tells it like it is.
Dube
If you start reading the book you will never put it down until finished.
Derek Salley
Very honest book about his life.
Nevada

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

49 of 53 people found the following review helpful By B. Billerbeck on November 13, 2013
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
This is a tough read. Mike's had a tough life, but there is a lot of wisdom in his words. I honestly wondered if people who grow up like him, on the streets, practically feral, might prefer the jails because there is finally structure. It's a brutally honest look into a life so different from mine. Interestingly, we were born the same year, so all things considered, he just got the short straw when it came to parents. I am so glad to see how far he's come. His awakenings are hard-won. He can look back on such a harsh history (I think worse than "The Glass Castle" for upbringings) and see the light. Really interesting read and I've never watched a boxing match in my life.
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68 of 76 people found the following review helpful By joy52 on November 13, 2013
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I confess I am only on chapter 2. It was very hard to put this book down after starting it yesterday. I found myself thinking about what I would say in a review. So far, it is a great read. It is well-written in a style that lets Mike Tyson's own personality and the unique flavor of his experiences tell his story. This is coming from a 60 year old, conservative, white mother of five, who thought Mike Tyson a bad role model for the same reasons he did. I was the last person who would have wanted to read something by Mike Tyson. A few years ago after one of his well-publicized scrapes, I saw him do a couple of interviews and realized he was developing insight. Suddenly, I liked him. I was rooting for him. I still am. I wonder if he even knows how important his story is.
I will update this after I finish.

Finished it and still give 5 stars. Got reminded of why I did not like him and then reminded of why I like him now. What Cus taught about becoming a champ now is being applied to the next phase of Mike's life. I believe he can do it. This is absolutely a story of one man's very tough journey.

A great read. Now wondering who will play the young Mike Tyson in the movie. There is so much to tell, maybe it should be a series (on cable, for the language and subject matter ).
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22 of 23 people found the following review helpful By LateNightShopaholic on November 13, 2013
Format: Kindle Edition
This book was well written. Very touching and macho -- simultaneously. It was real. Tragic. Explosive. Significant. It made me appreciate Mike and see him as a human being. What guts it must have taken to expose so much. And what a relief it must be to say the things that you want everyone to hear. I loved this book. The writer did a great job. It sounded like Mike Tyson. A lot of people aren't aware that Mike doesn't speak like a hoodlum, despite his background from the streets. He's fairly well-spoken. The Howard Stern interview this morning 11/13/2013 on Sirius was incredible. I had to come and review but I dont want to give away what's in the book.
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20 of 21 people found the following review helpful By J. Garner on November 24, 2013
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
The day this book was released, I read an excerpt posted somewhere or another wherein Tyson strangles Don King from the back seat of a limousine that King is driving. That sold me - I thought I was going to read a couple hundred pages of Mike Tyson telling insane stories. What I got was immeasurably better.

This book is Mike Tyson's life story, in Mike Tyson's words, as told to a writer. It might not be the undisputed truth, but it is his truth, and it's his entire truth. It is brutally, unforgivingly honest, and while he has few kind words for the likes of King, Robin Givens, and Desiree Washington, no one fares worse in these pages than Tyson himself.

Whatever you may think of Tyson, he is without a doubt one of the most fascinating sports figures of the past hundred years. He's a study in contradictions: a terrifying boxer with a temper that one could charitably describe as "mercurial" and yet he speaks softly, almost effeminately, with a lisp. The man said he was going to eat Lennox Lewis' children and praised Allah in the same sentence. He was paid tens of millions of dollars for fights that often lasted less than one round, and was bankrupt within ten years. Of course this guy's story is going to be great.

But the two episodes in his life that he's most known for, his tumultuous (and allegedly abusive) marriage to Robin Givens, and his rape trial after a night with pageant contestant Desiree Washington gone horribly, irreversibly wrong, aren't glossed over. At all. If anything, he talks about them - the trial in particular - in detail that's simply uncomfortable. And it has to be.
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24 of 30 people found the following review helpful By Denis Vukosav TOP 500 REVIEWER on November 13, 2013
Format: Hardcover
"Undisputed Truth" is memoir book of one of the most controversial man and athlete in past decades, Mike Tyson. And what is more important to emphasize, a very good memoir book.

Tyson who grew up in one of the meanest and poorest Brooklyn neighborhood Brownsville, he managed to become one of the most famous and ferocious all-time boxers and the youngest heavyweight champion ever.

Tyson who never knew his father and lost his mother when he was teenager, was member of the gang, walking around with the gun in his hand, he dropped out of the school but nevertheless became a successful boxer, married movie star and earned plenty of money.
But no matter how quickly he earned money even faster he spent all went bankrupt, eventually even ending up in prison humiliated before the whole world.

It's incredible to read how he spent money when he had it in abundance, for example buying the entire stock of Rolls Royce cars.
He had problems with alcohol and so it's interesting to learn that during recording of "The Hangover" movie in which he appeared he was also drunk or going through a hangover himself.

Mike Tyson's autobiography is very brave and honest book that speaks frankly about his life from his own mouth, being equally brutal on himself like he was in ring to other boxers. He speaks about those people who once were with him all the time when he was popular, and then turned their backs on him when everything went downhill.

He will also mention his (in)famous promoter Don King about which he doesn't have anything nice to say calling him names for his theft of around 50 million dollars from Tyson due to his naivety.
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