Open: An Autobiography

Front Cover
A. Knopf, 2009 - Biography & Autobiography - 385 pages
55 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 rebels in ways that will soon make him a 1980s icon. He dyes his hair, pierces his ears, dresses like a punk rocker. By the time he turns pro at sixteen, his new look promises to change tennis forever, as does his lightning-fast return.

And yet, despite his raw talent, he struggles early on. We feel his confusion as he loses to the world’s best, his greater confusion as he starts to win. After stumbling in three Grand Slam finals, Agassi shocks the world, and himself, by capturing the 1992 Wimbledon. Overnight he becomes a fan favorite and a media target.

Agassi brings a near-photographic memory to every pivotal match and every relationship. Never before has the inner game of tennis and the outer game of fame been so precisely limned. Alongside vivid portraits of rivals from several generations—Jimmy Connors, Pete Sampras, Roger Federer—Agassi gives unstinting accounts of his brief time with Barbra Streisand and his doomed marriage to Brooke Shields. He reveals a shattering loss of confidence. And he recounts his spectacular resurrection, a comeback climaxing with his epic run at the 1999 French Open and his march to become the oldest man ever ranked number one.

In clear, taut prose, Agassi evokes his loyal brother, his wise coach, his gentle trainer, all the people who help him regain his balance and find love at last with Stefanie Graf. Inspired by her quiet strength, he fights through crippling pain from a deteriorating spine to remain a dangerous opponent in the twenty-first and final year of his career. Entering his last tournament in 2006, he’s hailed for completing a stunning metamorphosis, from nonconformist to elder statesman, from dropout to education advocate. And still he’s not done. At a U.S. Open for the ages, he makes a courageous last stand, then delivers one of the most stirring farewells ever heard in a sporting arena.

With its breakneck tempo and raw candor, Open will be read and cherished for years. A treat for ardent fans, it will also captivate readers who know nothing about tennis. Like Agassi’s game, it sets a new standard for grace, style, speed, and power.
 

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LibraryThing Review

User Review  - briandarvell - LibraryThing

This was a phenomenal autobiography. I couldn't put the book down and learned a lot from one of the most charismatic of sports stars. Andre doesn't hold back and admits to some of his biggest personal ... Read full review

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - olegalCA - LibraryThing

I went in with a preconceived idea that this book was horrible and he was a horrible representative of the sport of tennis but was pleasantly surprised. He's just... honest. Not everything is sunshine ... Read full review

Selected pages

Contents

Section 1
3
Section 2
27
Section 3
39
Section 4
54
Section 5
62
Section 6
73
Section 7
81
Section 8
86
Section 21
228
Section 22
241
Section 23
253
Section 24
263
Section 25
281
Section 26
305
Section 27
306
Section 28
319

Section 9
96
Section 10
100
Section 11
112
Section 12
133
Section 13
141
Section 14
150
Section 15
157
Section 16
167
Section 17
182
Section 18
197
Section 19
204
Section 20
218
Section 29
325
Section 30
339
Section 31
340
Section 32
347
Section 33
348
Section 34
358
Section 35
371
Section 36
379
Section 37
387
Section 38
391
Copyright

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About the author (2009)

Andre Agassi played tennis professionally from 1986 to 2006. Often ranked number one, he captured eight Grand Slam singles championships. Founder of the Andre Agassi Charitable Foundation, he has raised more than $85 million for the Andre Agassi College Preparatory Academy for underprivileged children in Las Vegas, where he lives with his wife, Stefanie Graf, and their two children.

Bibliographic information