16 of 33 people found the following review helpful
Awful, awful, awful. AWFUL!!!,
This review is from: Ghosts of Manila: The Fateful Blood Feud Between Muhammad Ali and Joe Frazier (Paperback)
This is my first book review ever for Amazon. I felt that I had to say something about this horrible book.
For one thing, there is the relentless, mean-spirited deconstruction of Ali's character and intelligence. His main aim seems to show that Ali is treated with too much respect these days, and that he, Mark Kram, will treat him with NO respect so that everyone can see that it's doable. His words are clearly calculated to paint a picture of Ali as an idiot with no mental capabilities whatsoever. Ali's initial tests for the US military, for example, placed him at the "near moronic" level. "Near moronic?" This is a writer on a mission to cut the mighty down.
Such examples abound in the book. He seems to want nothing more than to expose Ali as the exact OPPOSITE of what he believes Ali's public perception is.
But the worst part about the book is this: as a writer, Mark Kram is absolutely unreadable. In a pompous, pretentious manner, he seems to want to use as many "hard" words as he possibly can, showing off incessantly with obscure vocabulary and stunted grammar, with cringe-worthy figures of speech thrown in for good measure. I have never, ever read a writer who uses words like "adumbrate" and "caterwaul" for NO GOOD REASON. He uses the words "ineluctable" and "mythopoeic" in the SAME SENTENCE. What is this, the S.A.T.'s? There are hundreds of examples of words like these. Words that would get a person's a** kicked if he were ever to actually SAY them in public.
But the book wasn't written for the general public; that's for sure. He's not writing for the reader's benefit, he's writing for his OWN benefit, to get his deep-seated resentment of Muhammad Ali off his chest, and to amuse himself with his awesome command of the English thesaurus.
Look, I'm not saying there isn't some truth in there. There is. The real Ali is somewhere in between the legend and the retard Kram portrays in this book. There are some decent descriptions of a couple of fights (using lots of "unabridged dictionary" words). But the bottom line is, if you like reading thoroughly biased tracts written with stunted language by pretentious authors, "Ghosts of Manila" is for you.