Book Review: Standing on the Shoulders of Giants

It’s not often that I get to take a look at things outside of the world of sports betting but after one of our clients told me he’d written a book, I wanted to know more, when I found it that book was sports related, well that was that, I HAD to read this.

And I’m glad I did, when Søren told me it was a book on Manchester United, my heart sunk a little, I’ll be honest, they’re not my favourite team and with all of the attention in the press on Sir Alex Fergusons retirement, I felt I had read enough on the Red Devils to keep me going for some time.

The book we received in the post though was not some fans diary of how great the club was, instead it is a historical account of various moments in United history, going from their humble beginnings on chemically tainted patches of land, through their financial troubles and finally onto the clubs transformation into the massive commercial vehicle that it is now.

This is a thoroughly fascinating book, it interweaves the history of a football club through the eyes of a passionate, yet articulate, fan with references to artists, philosophers and writers.  It looks at not just one clubs standing in the game but it’s position in relation to the world it existed in at the time.  It places the club in context with it’s community and it’s followers, both at home and abroad.

Naturally it also focuses on the characters that have shaped United existence,some already well known, others likely to have been forgotten without books like this.  It also looks at various matches that mark specific points in the clubs history as well as descriptions of Søren’s own trips to see his favourite club play.

I’m not a professional book reviewer (far from it) but I do enjoy a good book and I’ve read a good many books related to various clubs, this one has to be up there with the best.

If you’re looking for a present for a Manchester United fan or just a fan of football in general, this is a book that I can heartily recommend.  This isn’t a book that is just relevant now, it will stand the test of time and still be interesting to readers many years from now.  Like all the best books, this isn’t something I will read once, put away on the bookshelf and be forgotten, instead it is likely to join a small group of books that gets opened regularly so that I can refresh myself with a book that stands out in its genre.

I’d like to thank Bloombury Publishing for providing me with a copy of this book and to Søren himself for convincing me that reading a book based on his favourite club would be a worthwhile use of my time, he was certainly right in that regard.

You can find the book on Bloomburys website where it can be purchased in hardback (still my favourite from for any book) or in ebook format, it can also be found and purchased on Amazon and once you have finished reading it (or even during), you can join Søren on the books Facebook page.

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