Pronounced as the greatest goalscoring talent since Jimmy Greaves, 17-year old Robbie Fowler was immediately catapulted to fame and fortune. The thin, baby-faced Toxteth lad was now a millionaire, an idol, and inspiration to every kid who kicked a soccer ball. Yet his incredible potential was never quite realized. Injuries and persistent rumors of drug abuse and depression meant that he never became the world-beater so many predicted. This is a fascinating and unbelievably frank insight into the game, and a candid account of an incredible career, taking us behind the closed doors of professional soccer to expose what really happens at both club and international level. ... Read more
Customer Reviews (3)
Robbie Fowler's Autobiography
It's an interesting book written together with a ghost writer,but I think it would have been far better without all the effing and blinding which
if read by youngsters could have a very negative affect.
But as I am a fan of Robbie's and was sorry to see him leave Liverpool F.C. for the first time it still makes interesting reading learning for the first time about the streets of Toxteth and being a working class kid who has made it really good.
I hope he eventually writes a sequel whenever he decides to retire from full time football and believe he has in in him to make a first class coach and manager.
God moves in mysterious ways
Robbie Fowler is the God of Liverpool. Anyone who has watched his goals in a Liverpool jersey will tell you, in an era when you've the enimagtic Eric Cantona, the powerful Alan Shearer and, to a certain extent, a "prolific" Andy Cole ruling the headlines, that Robbie Fowler just happens to have a little more of that midas touch in front of goal.
Being a Liverpool fan and a fond observer of Fowler's goals, I was no doubt devastated when he was shipped out of Anfield almost five years ago. When news of his autobiography were released, I told myself that I'll buy it, regardless whether I'll read it or not. I mean, footballers' autobiographies are usually crap, full of ________ (insert vulgarity) and a glorified excuse to make some money for the subject.
After reading the book over the span of a few hours, it didn't surprise me that Fowler: My Autobiography justifies my perhaps cruel perception. But then again, it also proves to be quite an enjoyable read, because it covers some interesting issues that I'd really like to know about. You know. Houllier. Hoddle. Eileen Drewery (is this how you spell that? I'm sorry I couldn't be bothered to check).
I also particular enjoy the early moments of the book, even if they were rather slow-paced. Fowler (or his ghost writer) attempted to explain his origins, and while I'm not entirely convinced whether he was as ignorant about the on-goings of the Toxteth riots as he claimed, the background to the book was nicely set for a dramatic climb to fame for the striker who was once told he was too small to make it at the highest level.
What I really like about the book is, however, the dry humor that is littered throughout. Fowler was describing his father in a paragraph, and mentioned that the old man was a good-looker. He didn't forget to remind the readers that "that explains his good-looking profile". I know, it's corny, but it's exactly the kind of thing that I'd laugh about, and this book did a lot of that.
Disappointment? The overly "saintly" portrayal of Fowler himself. I do not believe he was a victim of consequences as he so vehemently attempted to drive across, and I find the frequent references to his upbringing a little more than hard to bear after, like, 20 pages. This book also has a fair amount of the swear word that starts with the letter "F", so if you get easily offended of such things, you may get really frustrated.
Still, this book is a light-hearted read if you don't expect anything too serious. Fowler is endearing because, apart from scoring goals (and tons of them), he has a colorful off-the-field life, as well as other non-goals-related on-field antics (snorting celebration, anyone?). I think this book manages to capture these rather well. It'd do well with a more coherent layout though. Some of the events seem to jumble up to fully understand when they really happened.
And, as spooky as this sounds, I was just reading a magazine article about Fowler just the night before I bought this book. The next morning, when I still contemplating whether to sneak out from the office to buy it, I got a call from my mate, telling me that Fowler has rejoined Liverpool from Manchester City on a free.
And so, Fowler has returned to Anfield, which makes this book all the more a considerable purchase for Liverpool fans who never felt that God has left. Now Robbie, please go score some goals!
He's just Robbie, Robbie from the block
I am a massive fan of Fowler the footballer. His life had all the ingredients for an interesting book: phenomenal talent, early success, hilarious pranks, bastard managers, terrible injuries, bad luck. He also seemed more honest and witty than your average footballer, so I had high expectations from his autobiography, but they were not met.
Unfortunately the book is, simply put, poorly written--which is not his fault I suppose. The tone is annoyingly apologetic, with some justifications (he's just a kid from Toxteth) repeated like mantras every three pages. Also annoyingly, whenever he makes a reference to his past success, which was phenomenal, he sounds defensive and adds that he's not arrogant about it (he's still just a kid from Toxteth). The amateurish mistake of the book is that it tells us how we should feel about him instead of just getting on with telling his story an letting us make up our minds about how to feel about him.
Books of this kind are at their best when they tell behind-the-scenses stories which were previously secret. This book is very thin in this area. Some funny stories about Eriksson and Houlier, the bastard managers from hell as far as Fowler is concerned, provide some color and interest but not enough. The actual stories are few and poorly told, with little in the way of insightful detail. The language lacks verve, except for odd foul words here and there, which seem strident rather than authentic. For authenticity, some self-incrimination on at least some occasions (for example the disgusting incident with LeSaux) would have been useful, but he goes at great lenghts to exculpate himself every single time (he was just a kid from Toxteth, you know).
I am convinced though that his life is a fascinating one and maybe sometimes, after he retires he'll have anohter go at it with a better ghostwriter.
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