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Open

4.25  ·  Rating details ·  75,221 ratings  ·  6,141 reviews
From Andre Agassi, one of the most beloved athletes in history and one of the most gifted men ever to step onto a tennis court, a beautiful, haunting autobiography.

Agassi’s incredibly rigorous training begins when he is just a child. By the age of thirteen, he is banished to a Florida tennis camp that feels like a prison camp. Lonely, scared, a ninth-grade dropout, he rebe
...more
Hardcover, 388 pages
Published November 9th 2009 by Knopf
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Kaye I would wait a few years. This is not all about sports and tennis, as there is a lot about his trials and tribulations with women, drugs and psycholog…moreI would wait a few years. This is not all about sports and tennis, as there is a lot about his trials and tribulations with women, drugs and psychologically trying to find himself. Kind of heavy for an 11 year old.(less)
Ellen Karnowski Yes, he has been through so many experiences as a player himself, he understands the tensions, struggles and mental anguish players have to be subject…moreYes, he has been through so many experiences as a player himself, he understands the tensions, struggles and mental anguish players have to be subject to and he could give good advice for any aspect of a player's life.(less)

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Elizabeth
Dec 26, 2009 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: Andy
My old editor always said that I should try to write like anyone, it should be J.R. Moehringer. So when this book came out--even though I'm a sub-par tennis player--I was excited. The second piece of information that made me want to read this book was Jara's review: "After finishing this I appreciate Agassi more as a human than a tennis player." That got me really curious.

A couple things that stood out to me after reading this: Agassi loses--a lot. Over and over and over. Yes there are the few
...more
Daniel Audet
Jan 24, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Finished "Open" last night. I realize I'm way late to the party, this book having come out in Nov. '09, but I'm not really a non-fiction book reader. I'm still very glad to have read this, Andre's story.
Why should I, or we, care? Why should anyone at all, tennis fan or not, care about Andre Agassi's life, let alone buy his book? Because this isn't just the "story" of a tennis player or just a story at all. Andres life covers a lot of real estate, both literally and figuratively. From Las Vegas
...more
Jonathan Ashleigh
Oct 07, 2014 rated it liked it
Open was too long but it was entertaining. It was sold as a tell-all but didn't feel as though he said anything groundbreaking besides that he was insecure about basically everything in his life. He only does drugs once and he was pressured into doing so, which is very different than what the media made this book out to be when it was released. Don't read this book if you think you are going to be blown away, but do read it if you love Andre and want to know more about him.
Ed
I have a checkered past with Andre Agassi. Having been a fan of pro-tennis since I was a kid, I was intrigued with Agassi when he debuted on the tour (I'll even admit to owning a pair of those denim shorts), but somewhere along the way something went astray and it took to the last couple of years of his career for me to re-warm up to him. Contributing to that personal opinion decline was observing him "behind the scenes" when I dabbled as a tennis writer/photographer for in the mid-/late-1990s, ...more
Otis Chandler
Mar 20, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Recommended to Otis by: Elizabeth
One of the best sports biographies I've read. I was a huge Agassi fan growing up, not because of his flair or haircut, but because of his amazing topspin and his tenacity. So to get the inside story on where he got both of those, was fascinating.

The first thing to realize about Agassi, is that like many tennis players, he got good, then bad, then really bad, then good, then bad, then good, etc. In other words, he loses. A lot. But the fascinating part of his story is what motivates him to keep
...more
Priyanshu
Jul 02, 2012 rated it it was amazing
While browsing my next buy, I had stumbled upon this one a number of times, before I finally decided to buy and read it last week. Time and money well spent.
So, what is the book about? First, it is not a story of a flawless man or an impeccable athlete. It is one of a confused, rebellious and an ever evolving man in search of himself, who by the way, plays great tennis. Second, it is also not a blow-by-blow account of tennis matches. But, a diary of his love-hate relationship with tennis; where
...more
Brian
(5.0) I want you to read this book

Oh my goodness, this was one of my favorite reading experiences ever. I'm not sure I can objectively explain it, but I laughed, I nearly cried, my palms sweated, I was just riveted (ask my wife). This memoir is so well written (Agassi gave effusive praise to J.R. Moehringer, who helped him record his history and transform it into this masterpiece, and I'm sure much of the credit must go to him) that I just couldn't handle it. It is such an emotional ride--perhap
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Ryan
Jun 02, 2020 rated it really liked it
When Agassi first wins prize money, he phones his father to ask what he should do. If he cashes the cheque, it will mean he's turning pro. His father's response is harsh but also true: "You've dropped out of school! You have an eighth-grade education. What are your choices? What the hell else are you going to do? Be a doctor?" So he turns pro at a young age without an education and proceeds to make many mistakes before he eventually puts his life together, marries Steffi Graf, and invests in his ...more
gio
Feb 16, 2016 rated it really liked it
Shelves: favorites
In case you didn't know (and if you don't know then I probably need to post Yuzu-stuff again) I'm a huge sports fan. And just to be clear and completely honest: I'm the kind of fan who wakes up at 7 on a Sunday to watch a competion with an unreliable streaming.
I'm the kind of fan who plans to stay up 'til 3 a.m. to watch the Olympics this year.
I shout at the tv.
I torture my family with my distress when my favourite athletes lose.
I made them watch swimming, diving, figure skating, football, fen
...more
Araxie Altounian
Dec 06, 2013 rated it it was amazing
I am not into tennis at all, but read this book back to back with Lang Lang's memoires, "Journey of a Thousand Miles". Why? Here are the stories of two men whose childhoods were taken away from them by their ambitious fathers who wanted their children to become "Number One". How each one reacted to their fate was what interested me. Once rich an famous, both men have done so much for younger generations, one through his charter school, the other through his foundation. Very touching, indeed. I m ...more
Mark Gandy
Apr 02, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Definitely one of my favorite sports autobiographies ever (yes, he used a ghostwriter, but it still sounds like it's written in Agassi's voice).

First, do you need to love tennis to enjoy the book? I don't think so. I followed the game closely through the late 1980s but then lost interest. So when I both listened to and read the book, I was hooked (both times).

A few takeaways:

1. 10k balls a day as a five-something-year-old. Really? No wonder he _____ed tennis (sorry, no spoilers).
2. Sent thousand
...more
Morgan
Apr 10, 2020 rated it it was amazing
This is about as honest and open as you are going to get in an autobiography, especially from a sports star.

After staggering ups and downs, playing well into his 30’s, Agassi became a true tennis super star, beloved to fans and sportswriters’.

One can only applaud this boy who became a man on a tennis court while battling his demons on and off the court.

From Andre to you: “It’s easier to be free and loose, to be yourself, after laughing with the ones you love.” (Pg.342)

It is inspiring reading.

I
...more
Adi
Nov 18, 2011 rated it it was amazing
This book kept me awake at night. I felt compelled to finish it in 2 days ("straight sets" maybe? - not my fault for the metaphor).
I might as well add that I was surprised to find out that Agassi fundamentally hates tennis and that he was an underachiever - he could have done (much) better. The way his father forced him to train as a little boy and the life he led as a tennis pro were also very interesting to know.
Dan
May 17, 2020 rated it it was amazing
This is possibly the best sports book I’ve ever read! I was riveted by this book. I am not a huge tennis fan per se but I am familiar with most all of the competitors in this book. As far as Grand Slam victories go Andre Agassi ranks 9th place all time for men with 8 victories. Since his championships were spread out over a long career it makes for an evenly spaced autobiography. Lots of ups and downs in between.

This autobiography at its core isn’t really all about sports but rather the human an
...more
Lorenzo Berardi
Sep 23, 2012 rated it liked it
Shelves: american, 2012
«Did you know that Agassi is an Iranian surname? It should be pronounced Agassì, with the stress on the last "i"».

No, I didn't know that when I was 12. But I kept that in mind, as you can read.
Now, the same fact that, back in 1994, my friend Amir (owner of an Iranian and final "i" stressed surname himself) told me something on Andre Agassi and I knew who that guy was means something.

One year before our teens, Amir and I were all but into tennis. Not that we didn't care about sports - football, b
...more
Candy
Dec 17, 2010 rated it liked it
Shelves: read-in-2010
It is hard to know what to say about this book. It is a strange book! It has a strange tone. It is a page-turner.
Why?
I'm not sure.

Agassi hates tennis. Agassi plays tennis long after his peers have retired even at the point where his body is barely holding on.
Agassi has an insane dad. So insane and high-strung and focused on his kids' tennis that it seems like it can't be true.
The media doesn't get Agassi. The media thinks he's a brash young a-hole. But he acts like a brash young a-hole. But h
...more
Sumit Singla
Most sporting memoirs I've read so far begin with the sportsperson's love for the game at an early age, some fortuitous occurrence or sheer slogging hard to make it big, and then staying competitive at the big stage despite obstacles, issues and problems of various kinds.

Not this one. Probably the first one I've read that begins with the author talking about hate for the game. Andre Agassi's voice certainly seems articulate and honest. (Of course, that also means the ghostwriter did the job well
...more
Kasa Cotugno
Who knew what hid behind his seemingly playboy demeanor? This generous autobiography is filled with a page turning intensity, laying out his deemons both physical and emotional, and how they weigh equally when facing an opponent across a net. Late in the book, he observes that the net which should separate players actually weaves them together. His reconstruction of many of the over 1000 matches hes participated in makes for fascinating reading, whether tennis is your game or not (it used to be ...more
Mirjana **DTR - Down to Read**

I love how candid and honest Andre Agassi is from start to finish. A highly recommended read for any tennis fan.
Surajit
Jan 05, 2020 rated it it was amazing
So many childhood memories of watching tennis, I recognise and can visualise all the tennis players in the book. Andre and Steffi was such pleasant surprise back then. Loved this, wonder why I didn’t pick this up before.
Gus Sanchez
Nov 24, 2009 rated it really liked it
Among Andre Agassi's impressive accomplishments - 8-time Grand Slam winner, Olympic Gold medalist, nearly 800 career wins - we can now add "author" to his list of accomplishments. It's his words, every single one of them in this book, and Agassi demonstrates a true gift for prose and pace. He even marvels at his ability to write a memoir; for someone who pretty much flunked out of school to pursue tennis, Agassi grew into a vocal and tireless advocate for education, a voracious reader, and now, ...more
Penni Pappas
Jan 02, 2011 rated it it was ok
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Heather
Jul 20, 2011 rated it really liked it
First of all, let me say I am not a tennis fan. At all. I don't know the terminology, and I have no idea what the rules are. However, I quite liked this book and genuinely didn't mind all the tennis stuff.

For the first half of the book I sort of thought that Andre sounded like such a "guy." But not in a good way if you know what I'm saying. But man, he won me over by the end! Now he seems like a little softie to me and I'm slightly obsessed with googling him. He seems like a good person, and he
...more
Andreea
Feb 14, 2014 rated it it was amazing
I knew that this was one of the best autobiographies, but I was still amazed at how good it's written. Agassi spills everything in his memoir. He talks about his hatred for tennis, about his wins and losses, about his wonderful team, about the women he loved, about his rivals. The thing I loved the most was the self-irony, the courage to admit his weaknesses and his strengths without sounding cocky. Then I loved the humor, the metaphors, the comparisons. I also loved the fact that with 2-3 excep ...more
Yousif Al Zeera
Nov 04, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: nonfiction
"Open", opens you to the normality of contradictions. It opens up unexpected dimensions into his tennis career, in addition to his childhood, marital life and everything off the court.

It is terrifically written, engrossing you to the way he thinks and feels before, throughout and after the game. It is not about how great he was, but rather how confused, unsure, rebellious and sick of his life, his tennis and himself!

He was in constant search of himself and kept evolving to understand himself and
...more
Vio
May 18, 2018 rated it really liked it
Recommended to Vio by: Lavinia
Well, I postponed reading this book for a long time. When I finally got to it, it took me an eternity to finish it. OK, I took a small hiatus from reading in general (around two weeks), this happened when I had 17 pages left in the book. I started to read again, but I read another 4 books before finishing this one.

I cannot really say what I disliked about it. I could not ”believe” the voice of the ”author”. It sounded fake to me. I wish it would have been different.

It was at times painful to rea
...more
Eric Franklin
May 15, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I have never read such an unflinching self-account from a major star (although I hear I need to check out the Duff McKagan autobiography too, if I want to truly wallow in STD-soaked self-reflection). I expected something much more self-absorbed and glossy, but instead got something resembling the inner monologue of an exceptionally driven athlete.

This is a book about a father who pushes his child too hard, the difficulties with relationships and social skills that it produces as the child matur
...more
Keep Calm Novel On
Jan 26, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Andre Agassi shares his pain and joy with such honesty and integrity. Open is the perfect title for this autobiography.
Dillon
Mar 03, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This book is SO good. Andre Agassi takes you into his life, starting with the shocking statement that he “hates tennis.” He describes his journey starting as a tennis prodigy, then turning pro and struggling with the press and public perception, premature hair loss, and his up and down personal life.
But what I loved most of all was his description of the matches. He makes you really appreciate the mental fortitude that a person needs to win a tennis match. He talks of matches he could have won
...more
Anurag Kesarwani
Feb 02, 2012 rated it it was amazing
When i picked up this book the name OPEN suggested Andre will discuss about his prolong tennis career, his rivalry with Pete Sampras and many nail biting matches at the 4 grand slams or the OPENS, but from the first page till the end it was more about Agassi's fight with his inner self, his projection to the outer world and how wins through life after numerous failures. The title OPEN actually signifies how with course of time Andre puts his inner feeling out in the open with his near and dear o ...more
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Open, by Andre Agassi 14 314 Apr 26, 2020 12:45PM  
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Andre Kirk Agassi is now a retired professional tennis player and former World No. 1. Generally considered by critics and fellow players to be one of the greatest tennis players of all time, Agassi has been called the best service returner in the history of the game.

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A great audiobook requires not only fantastic source material, but also a narrator who can translate that text into an amazing...
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“It's no accident, I think, that tennis uses the language of life. Advantage, service, fault, break, love, the basic elements of tennis are those of everyday existence, because every match is a life in miniature. Even the structure of tennis, the way the pieces fit inside one another like Russian nesting dolls, mimics the structure of our days. Points become games become sets become tournaments, and it's all so tightly connected that any point can become the turning point. It reminds me of the way seconds become minutes become hours, and any hour can be our finest. Or darkest. It's our choice.” 119 likes
“Remember this. Hold on to this. This is the only perfection there is, the perfection of helping others. This is the only thing we can do that has any lasting meaning. This is why we're here. To make each other feel safe.” 88 likes
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