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Dangerous

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4.62  ·  Rating details ·  26 ratings  ·  16 reviews
A quarter of a century ago journalist and author Ian Probert decided never to write about boxing again. His decision was prompted by the injuries sustained by boxer Michael Watson during his world title fight with Chris Eubank. Now, in common with so many fighters, Probert is making an inevitable comeback. Dangerous sees Probert return to the scene of an obsession that has ...more
Paperback, 288 pages
Published September 15th 2016 by Pitch Publishing
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Rating details
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Andy
May 18, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I read this book in two sessions, and could barely put it down.

It's not about boxing. It's about depression and addiction and love and loss and regret and it's most of all about fathers and sons.

It's just told through a prism of intimate conversations with men who fight. Brave, proud men like Benn and Eubank and Collins and Graham.

It's touching and sad and funny. And it'll stay with me for a while.
Phillip Stephens
A mirror for the brutality of everyday life

Ian Probert devotes Dangerous to interviewing England's premiere boxers of the eighties and nineties as well as their sons who follow them into the game. Don't dismiss Dangerous as a boxing book, however. Probert appropriates boxing as a vehicle to drive down the twisting lanes of chronic pain, depression and disfunction that many families live with when a parent is driven by obsession. Probert discovers how often these themes intersect in the lives of
...more
Lizzy Baldwin
Sep 20, 2016 rated it it was amazing
I’m not quite sure how to review this book because it’s like nothing I’ve ever read before and I’m not sure I’ll ever read anything like it again. This is a book about a journey, about self-worth, about family and roots and finding, or trying to find answers that might have always been slightly out of reach. In the book Probert tries to come to terms with the death of his father. Their relationship, built so strongly through the passion for boxing has become weathered and tense through the lives ...more
Andrew Updegrove
Oct 06, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: non-fiction
Some two and half decades ago, an up and coming sportswriter focusing on boxing watched as the middleweight that had taken him under his wing was critically and permanently injured during a world title fight. The emotional impact of that event was enough to keep him from writing about his favorite sport ever again - until now.

Not long after that fight, the author was stricken by a chronic, undiagnosed illness that left him, like his boxer mentor, unable to lead a normal, productive life. But
...more
John Needham
Nov 10, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Well it just goes to show: you shouldn’t believe all the easy stereotypes. All boxers, by the very nature of their pugilistic sport, are insensitive, inherently violent men, devoid of finer feelings, right? Wrong! The author ably demolishes this prejudice in this excellent and fascinating exposé of the world of boxing (or to be precise, the boxing world of decades ago when he was a boxing journalist).

An admission: I have little interest in sport, whether playing – much too old now anyway –
...more
Angela Burkhead
Aug 20, 2016 rated it it was amazing
I am not a fan of boxing. Not that I dislike the sport, I have no reason to dislike it. I've never had the opportunity to be introduced to boxing, nor have I ever had the inclination to take the initiative and go to a real boxing match. I'm telling you this now because though I have never felt the exciting rush of seeing two men deck it out in front of me as described in Ian's work, I have indeed read, and enjoyed, Ian's work since discovering Johnny Nothing a few years ago.

So while I am not a
...more
Jayne
Dec 06, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Quite frankly, a book about boxing would not be an automatic go-to read for me, but because I had read Johnny Nothing, Ian Probert's satire for kids, I was confident that I would enjoy the writing style, if not the subject.

Years before, Michael Watson was critically and permanently injured during a world title fight with Chris Eubank. Traumatised, Probert vowed never to write about boxing again, a decision brought about by shock and guilt that he had been unable to help someone he truly admired
...more
Rachael Ritchey
Oct 24, 2016 rated it really liked it
This book is about so much more than boxing. There is a good deal of that, but when it says intimate it is true. The men and women you will meet in this book are real and raw. I enjoyed this true life story so much, and my biggest take away was the importance of fathers. For better or worse, fathers matter in the lives of their children. And the choices fathers make, to be there or not be there, to care or abuse, to support or discourage, will all be written onto the hearts of the the ones who ...more
Paul Forbes
Dec 06, 2016 rated it it was amazing
I’m not a boxing fan or even sports fan but I’ve just finished reading ‘Dangerous’ by Ian Probert. It’s a very personal account of his work as a boxing writer and journalist, how he stopped writing about the sport and how and why he started again. This is a really moving tell-all story, the author barely holds back revealing many personal secrets about his life to the boxers he interviews, his therapist and us the readers. This book had me laughing one minute and welling-up the next. It’s ...more
Jack O'Donnell
Oct 02, 2016 rated it really liked it
A reminder—if we need one— how Dangerous boxing can be is the Sunday Mail front-page headline: ‘My baby has lost his daddy, I’ll never let him fight,’ with a prominent picture of Chloe, holding her infant Rocco, with an insert photo of her partner, and the baby’s father, twenty-five-year old Mike Towell, crouching in a standard boxing stance and fighting Dale Evans on Thursday evening at St Andrew’s Sporting Club. Towell lost more than the bout, he lost his life. The Observer ranks it further ...more
Christina
Mar 10, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: sport, non-fiction
An unexpected read that delves deep into the issues that athletes and fans face when things go wrong in sport.

A few decades after leaving the sport behind following a rather harrowing event, ex sports journalist Ian Probert returns to investigate boxing and all the changes that have occurred since his last foray into the sport. And change it has...

Based on the blurb, I was expecting a book on boxing but, instead, I got a memoir punctuated by meetings, memories, and the good (and bad) that the
...more
Paul Williams
Feb 13, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
An in-depth look at the boxing world

Though not a major fan of boxing and someone who rarely takes in a full 12 rounds of televised boxing, usually clicking onto the highlights to see the fight. I was weary of what i would read within these very pages....i could not imagine how emotional i felt after being taking on an frank journey into the world of boxing. Superb excellent book.
Sue Vincent
Nov 03, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Unexpectedly compelling

"As I sit here with this remarkable man, I realise that sometimes it takes another person to articulate your own feelings before you can begin to understand them."

Were I to pick one phrase that stands out from this book and exemplifies it for me, it would be this.

What have love and boxing got to do with each other? Very little, you might think, outside of a trashy romance, yet in ‘Dangerous’, author Ian Probert reveals an unexpectedly gentle facet of a hard-edged world. ‘
...more
Wendy Unsworth
Dec 07, 2016 rated it really liked it
One of the hardest things is to understand the motivations of others when they move in a world so alien to you that it might indeed be another planet.

This is the way I feel about boxing, a sport that lives on the periphery of my universe. I know of its existence and yet I have no desire to explore it depths and cannot fathom why anyone would. Of course the fascination lies in that, to some, this world is wonderful, desirable and the centre of their existence. The fascination is that we humans
...more
John Needham
Nov 09, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Well it just goes to show: you shouldn’t believe all the easy stereotypes. All boxers, by the very nature of their pugilistic sport, are insensitive, inherently violent men, devoid of finer feelings, right? Wrong! The author ably demolishes this prejudice in this excellent and fascinating exposé of the world of boxing (or to be precise, the boxing world of decades ago when he was a boxing journalist).

An admission: I have little interest in sport, whether playing – much too old now anyway –
...more
Chantelle Atkins
Having previously read Rope Burns, and the amazing Johnny Nothing, I was very much looking forward to reading Dangerous. I follow Ian's blog and have always enjoyed his writing style and content. I'm not a fan of boxing, but like a lot of other reviewers have mentioned, you do not need to be to appreciate this book. In Rope Burns, we followed Ian's journey into journalism and writing, and there were mentions of his fraught relationship with his father. Boxing was the only thing they had in ...more
Patrick C Lune
rated it it was amazing
Feb 19, 2017
George F Zeleny
rated it it was amazing
Oct 25, 2016
Barry Cosgrave
rated it liked it
Jan 02, 2019
John Needham
rated it it was amazing
Nov 10, 2016
Ellen Best
rated it it was amazing
Nov 11, 2016
Anthony Fairhurst
rated it really liked it
Sep 23, 2017
Ross Patrick
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Sep 12, 2019
Dave Caswell
rated it it was amazing
Oct 21, 2019
Olav Nilsen
rated it really liked it
Jan 09, 2020
Mario
rated it it was amazing
Feb 13, 2018
Ian Probert
Aug 24, 2016 added it  ·  (Review from the author)  ·  review of another edition
Dave Allen
marked it as to-read
Nov 23, 2016
Matt Gale
marked it as to-read
Jan 06, 2020
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16 followers
Ian Probert has been scribbling down words ever since he learned to spell the phrase: 'Once upon a time...'. He is the author of Internet Spy, Rope Burns and a bunch of other titles. Internet Spy was a bestseller in the US and made into a TV film. Rope Burns is a book about why books shouldn't be written about boxing. Ian has also written things for a shed load of newspapers and magazines. When ...more
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