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Crossing the Line: The Outrageous Story of a Hockey Original
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Crossing the Line: The Outrageous Story of a Hockey Original

3.78 of 5 stars 3.78  ·  rating details  ·  336 ratings  ·  53 reviews
The autobiography of one of hockey’s first rebels and a beloved member of the “Big Bad Bruins,” this book shares how Derek Sanderson’s ferocious style helped lead the team to two Stanley Cup victories in the early 1970s. Living life in the fast lane, Sanderson grew his hair long, developed a serious drinking problem, and eventually found himself out of the league and prowl ...more
Hardcover, 400 pages
Published October 5th 2012 by Triumph Books (first published January 1st 2012)
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I was completely surprised by this book. Sanderson and Kevin Shea have put together a telling of Sanderson's life that readers will find riveting regardless of whether or not they are hockey fans. The highs and lows of his life were so extreme that they are the stuff of legend. There are of course the stories of Derek's rise to fame and his party lifestyle, along with wonderful anecdotes about playing with his good friends Bobby Orr and Phil Esposito, but for me the best parts of the book came o ...more
Harpercollins Canada
Crossing the Line, by Derek Sanderson is an eye-opening story of the life of one of hockey's greatest players. At the high point of his life, Derek was playing for the Boston Bruins, he was the highest paid athlete in the world and he was a winger for Bobby Orr. In fact, he assisted that famous goal by Bobby Orr where Orr scored and then went flying through the air. But the high was not to last as he plummeted so low he ended up sleeping on a park bench. This is a story about Derek's rise to fam ...more
Tony Sannicandro
Years ago I read Sanderson's "I got to be me" the story of his life with the Boston Bruins. Now comes the sequel and in the style of the 21st century we get the whole story warts and all. Turk should be praised for everything he has accomplished in his life. After hitting the bottom again and again he cleaned his act up and became the person all his fans hoped he would become. Thank you Turk for writing this book!
This is the second hockey memoir I've read this year, after Bobby Orr's. As much as I greatly preferred Orr as a player and person, Sanderson's memoir stands head and shoulders above Bobby's. Where Bobby's essential goodness and humility shone through, making the account rather boring, Sanderson manages to capture the craziness of his years in the 70s without endorsing his lifestyle or overly moralizing about it. Sanderson recounts his early years, his rapid rise to the Bruins, the glory years w ...more
If Derek Sanderson doesn't epitomize an NHLer from the 1970's - nobody does. He was born to play the game in that era. Rough, unforgiving and often unfair. He worked for everything he gained and then basically threw it all away. Numerous demons grabbed a hold of him and it nearly cost him his life.

If you ever wanted to read a roller coaster ride of a story, this is the one to get.

Sanderson gained a strong work ethic from his parents. His father really impressed on him to work hard - harder than
On the heels of finishing the Bobby Orr autobiography Orr: My Story, it seemingly only makes sense that the Derek Sanderson autobiography Crossing the Line: The Outrageous Story of a Hockey Original should have been the next read. Well, I did get to reading the book, but not before reading two books before then. It should be no surprise that Sanderson's book has more details than what Orr provided in his book, as Sanderson was the outspoken, fast living yin to Bobby Orr's soft-spoken yang. Where ...more
Marc Leroux
How do you go from being the highest paid athlete in the world to sleeping on the street? Derek Sanderson, who, in his prime, was one of the best centers in hockey, did just that. In this tell-all, hide-nothing autobiography, Derek candidly tells of his rise to fame, the lifestyle that eventually destroyed him and then his recovery. I was fortunate enough to have seen Derek play, on what was arguably the best Bruin team ever, and while he was known for his "leave nothing on the table" playing st ...more
having grown up watching "the big bad bruins" and remembering Derek sanderson playing I thought this would be a fascinating read. for the most part it was but it was also frustrating in that it needed better editing. essentially it was a bunch of anecdotes told by sanderson, kind of like sitting with a good buddy and having a cup of coffee and reliving old times, cobbled together with memories of various games in his career (lots of stats and play by play.) there were several times where the tim ...more
A must read - though at times I felt some of Derek's stories were a bit over exaggerated. I also felt myself pulling my hair out due to Derek's immaturity, stubbornness, and lack of common sense. If you are Bruins fan, please read because you will gain an inside view of life in the NHL during the 70s. The man lead an unbelievable life, but a sad one as well.
Excellent book full of great stories. At times you felt like you were at the game with him. Some stories jumped in time a little but it was still a great read.
Lyle Freimark

Started off slow but picked up steam. Very interesting life, very well written. Must read for any hockey or sports fan? Can't wait till the movie comes out.
Meticulously researched and interesting book about one of my favourite hockey players.
I came to know Derek Sanderson as a Boston Bruins color commentator in the 80's and 90's. I came to know him as the one who fed Bobby Orr the puck on "The Goal" in which we see Booby Orr flying through the air as he scored the Stanley cup winning goal in 1970. After winning again in 1972 he took a detour in the ill-fated WHA hockey league and became known as the world's highest paid athlete for a short time with the Philadelphia Blazers. He went on to play stints with New York Rangers, St Louis ...more
Brad McKenna
Man the 70s Bruins were flat out awesome and Turk was a good reason why. I am familiar with his wild child reputation but reading about it was something else. He was more like a rock star than a hockey player. The poor dude abused alcohol and drugs, became penniless and homeless only to get back on his feet. His is a very good tale of caution.

That said, the end of the book strayed a bit from the typical autobiography and read more like a motivational speaker's script. I understand that his is a
I'd have given this book four stars but for the often choppy flow of the story, which I presume is the fault of Kevin Shea, the professional writer who was supposed to pull Sanderson's story together in cohesive form. The story itself is compelling. Sanderson's life is more than the had it/lost it/got it back tale so many celebrities have lived; he had so much more than most, sank to depths so much deeper than most, and came out of it much healthier and more whole than most. I strongly disagree ...more
This is surprisingly interesting until it gets repetitive and preachy. I appreciate the frankness with which he addresses his Alcholism and struggles to recover, but the tales grow tiresome after repeated tellings. Also, his tale of his later career as financial advisor reads more as a sales pitch than a biography. In all, I would say the memory of how I enjoyed the first half of the book was what got me through the increasingly tiresome later chapters.
Where do I begin?? First off, the writing is passable. Secondly Derek is a huge egomaniac. And a drunk. Even though he is now sober and has found God (puke!!), he is still very much in denial if he deludes himself into thinking his actions did NOT effect his play. This is told in a "stream of consciousness" style so he ramble a bit and tell his story out of order at times. He is the poster child for the person who has it all and blows it - big time! Probably should be required reading for the yo ...more
Wicked I was listening to the man himself telling stories in a bar. Written in a story tellers voice, very allegorical. A little preachy in the end, but hey, he earned his right to give advice, so I didn't mind one bit.
Reminded me a lot of that one Simpson's episode when we find out how homers mom ran off. Abe was watching Superbowl III and Mona saw Joe Namaths hair blowing in the wind and turned into a hippy. I wonder how many hippies Derek inspired.
We need more colorful people in
Really interesting book, especially for Original Six or Boston Bruins fans. The overall style of the book is what brought down the stars- the first parts of the book are very stats oriented, and only near the end of the book do you find out what was really happening with his addiction and other issues. It would have been nice to have those as a more cohesive story. Nonetheless, an interesting and inspiring book for hockey fans.
Not a literary classic. but the stories and subject were of great interest to me. Loved the background on the other Bruins stars as well. Also, any book that has Jimmy Buffett writing Come Monday at Daisy's has to get 3 stars in my book.
A very interesting story about a very interesting person. Told first hand and has a lot of interesting facts that I never heard about. It could have been called, The rise and fall of Derek Sanderson.
Jon Sanders
Derek Sanderson is proof that there are second chances in life if you just admit to your weaknesses and stop letting them conquer you. Turk, you are one of my heroes.
I can't give this more than 2 stars. There is nothing but misinformation and pure conjecture from page 297 on. I don't know how i actually finished this book.
William F.W. McDonald
Outrageous tales of one of hockey's "originals"... Worth a read by any Bruins fan or hockey fan in general
Jbartow Bartow
Good story of redemption. There were parts that I was laughing out loud about.
Scott Vout
Crazy life, lucky to be alive.

A great story and a great message

I grew up a fan of Booby Orr and the Big Bad Bruins and looked forward to reading this book. Although I tried I could not compel myself to finish this book. The writing was disorganized and less than riveting. Derek Sanderson the hockey player and celebrity appeared to have few redeeming qualities and while I understand that he had changed over time, and the course of the book, I could not bear to finish a book that celebrated this grossly overpaid athlete whose life and actions were not those o ...more
I remember watching Derek Sanderson play hockey as a child in the 1960s. He was one of the greatest players of his day. His story is fascinating and a great read for fans of the game.
This book was about an amazing hockey player, so yes, it's about hockey. It's about an alcoholic and drug addict, it's about how your true friends are there to help you up no matter how many times you fall, it's about working your BUTT off to get what you want, it's about happy endings, it's about the despair of's a wonderful book written by a truly amazing human being.
Sean Eddy
There are a lot of nice anecdotes from the wild and ridiculous 70s era of hockey in this one. Some of the stories are too good to be true. There may be elements of truth to them but I wouldn't be shocked to find out exaggerations were made copiously throughout the book. It's written like Sanderson is there telling his story and jumping all over the place, which can make it a little hard to follow. This one is a decent read for hockey fans but I can't imagine it having an audience for anyone else ...more
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