Alone: The Triumph and Tragedy of John Curry (Hardcover)

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Shortlisted for the William Hill Sports Book of the Year award.

One winter's night in 1976, millions of people all over the world watched John Curry skate to Olympic glory on an ice rink in Austria. Overnight he became one of the most famous men on the planet and changed ice skating from marginal sport to high art.

And yet the man was--and would always remain--an absolute mystery to a world that was dazzled by his gift. Surely, men's skating was supposed to be Cossack-muscular, not sensual and ambiguous like this.

Curry himself was an often-tortured man of labyrinthine complexity. For the first time, Alone untangles the extraordinary web of his toxic, troubled, brilliant--and short--life. It is a story of childhood nightmares, furious ambition, sporting genius, lifelong rivalries, homophobia, Cold War politics, financial ruin and deep personal tragedy. Alone reveals the restless, impatient, often dark soul of a man whose words could lacerate, whose skating invariably moved audiences to tears, and who--after succumbing to AIDS, as so many of his fellow artists and friends did--died of a heart attack aged just 44.

About the Author

Bill Jones is a British journalist, who has worked on hundreds of documentaries for the BBC, ITV, and Channel 4. His first book--The Ghost Runner--won him The Times Best New Writer in the 2012 British Sports Book Awards and was shortlisted for the William Hill award. Alone is his second book. Born in Bridlington, the author currently lives in Ampleforth, North Yorkshire, where--despite a mountain of evidence to the contrary--he insists that his ancestry is Welsh.

Praise For…

“Given that many who best knew Curry were, like him, lost to AIDS, it's impressive Jones was able to craft such an intimate portrait.” —Metrosource Magazine

“Alone is more than a sports biography. . . . [I]t is a timely reminder of the fine boundary between sport and art and the courage it took, and still takes, to be a gay athlete.” —Sunday Times

“A terrific read, filled with juicy detail and driven by sympathy for a man who who was feted as a national hero but was extremely hard to like.” —The Times

“A moving and explosive biography of an ice skating genius.” —Manchester Evening News

“Movingly told.” —Choice Magazine

“A fascinating exploration of a tragic talent.” —Attitude

“The biography, approved by his family, delves into the complex, tormented character of Curry, his jealousies, tantrums, and fractured relationships with all but a few who passed through his life, and his never-ending struggle for acceptance.” —International Figure Skating Magazine

"A fascinating exploration of a deeply troubled man . . . a reminder of just how much courage it took to be an openly gay sportsman in the Seventies." —Mail on Sunday

"Jones’ beautifully and sensitively written biography . . . does not gloss over Curry’s faults . . . but reminds us of his genius." —Independent on Sunday

"A brilliant, honest and detailed account of a tortured sporting genius. A compelling account of a troubled athlete’s rise and fall. He’s gone, but this biography should mean he’s never forgotten again." —Mail Online

Product Details
ISBN: 9781408853429
ISBN-10: 1408853426
Publisher: Bloomsbury Sport
Publication Date: January 13th, 2015
Pages: 352
Language: English