Boxing Hall of Fame--With Books "Updated Weekly!"

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Boxing Library Hall of Fame

We are a New-York-based book publishing house interested in books and boxers.

We are also interested in promoting academic growth and literacy within our youth.

We asked boxers, and prominent figures within the boxing world, to tell us the title of their favorite book. "What is the book that you enjoyed reading the most?" we inquired.

Their book could be fiction, nonfiction, memoir, autobiography, history, sport-related, or not. We simply wanted to peek into their soul and see what book--as a kid, or now—knocked them out!

Below, are their responses. Enjoy!

Leland "Sugar Man" Hardy

Name: Leland "Sugar Man" Hardy

    1983 Pennsylvania State Heavyweight Amateur Champion
    • Won the 1989 Madison Square Garden "Fight of the Year" which Boxing Scene Magazine included on its list of "Top 20 Fights of the 80's".
    • Many call the Hardy vs. Padilla match the greatest undercard fight of all time.
    • Represented Pennsylvania in the 1983 National Golden Gloves Championship.
    • Entered the Wharton School of Business and the Joseph Lauder Institute of Management and International Studies at the University of Pennsylvania where he gained two master's degrees.
    • After his boxing career he worked at Wall Street and later became a succesful business manager, representing rappers and sports stars, such as Venus and Serena Williams.
    • won 4 (KO 4) + lost 4 (KO 4) + drawn 1 = 9 rounds boxed 22 : KO% 44.44

    Favorite Book: "Uncharted Course - The Story of My Life" by Anthony Drexel Duke (with Richard Firstman)

    "My favorite book is "Uncharted Course - The Story of My Life" by Anthony Drexel Duke. It's the life story of my dear friend, (thenamesake of Drexel and Duke Universities, and cousin of Saint Katherine Drexel), who was a part of my mother's and aunt's parochial school education in Philadelphia. Tony Duke, despite being born of privilege, dedicated his entire life to helping underprivileged, particularly Black, inner-city children, through his Boys and Girls Harbor Foundation. Moreover, he sat at the feet of his grandfather, Edward Biddle, (of Bailey Banks & Biddle fame), the latter who had a boxing ring at his Philadelphia mansion and who started the boxing program at the U.S. Naval Academy in Annapolis, MD. Gene Tunney, the Heavyweight Champion of the World in 1926, credits Edward Biddle with turning him into a professional fighter."

Jill Diamond

Name: Jill Diamond

Favorite Book: "Baby Shark" by Robert Fate

"I like this book for two good reasons: One--it's about a young girl with guts who stands up and reeks havoc on all of the bad people she meets. And two--I admire the author. He's an Okie who told himself "I wanna be an author" and he had the courage and ability to pursue his dream. He's 71 years old and he now has three books published!"

Jack Hirsch

Name: Jack Hirsch

    Vice President of BWAA - Boxing Writers Association of America.
    • Vice-President Secretary of American Association of Professional Ringside Physicians.
    • Senior American correspondent for British Boxing News.
    • East Coast Editor of
    • Official H.A.D. (Help Against Drugs) Public Relationist.
    • Received "Writer of the Year" Award from America's Assocation for the Improvement of Boxing.
    • Ring 8 Board Director.

Favorite Book: "Confessions of a Fighter" by Peter Wood

"This book, "Confessions of a Fighter" is a classic -- it's raw, honest and embodies the very pulse of amateur boxing in New York City. It takes me back to my roots, my youth, when I was fighting. I know the cast of colorful characters--the New York City fighters, the trainers and the gyms -- it reminds me of the deep emotions in my heart. This book punches you in the heart! It's one of the best."

Aaron Braunstein

Name: Aaron Braunstein

    New York City's Indefatigable & Irrepressible "Shock Jock"
    • Boxing Promoter.
    • Radio Personality.
    • Secretary General WPBF.

Favorite Book: "The Fountainhead" by Ayn Rand

"I enjoyed reading 'The Fountainhead' by Ayn Rand. It changed my life. Howard Rourke, the main character, was an architect who lived by his own rules. I enjoy Rand's philosophy which is "the concept of man as a heroic being, with his own happiness as the moral purpose of his life, with productive achievement as his noblest activity, and reason as his only absolute." She lables her philosophy 'Objectivism.'"

Don Majeski

Name: Don Majeski

    U.S. Boxing Agent for Sauerland Events

    Favorite Book: "A Man For All Seasons" by

    "This is such a beautiful book I can still recite lines from it. The writing flows and has integrity, and the main character, Sir Thomas More, is beyond admirable. He was convicted and beheaded for treason. He allowed himself to be persecuted, and later executed, rather than renounce his oath to the Pope and the Catholic Church. More became a martyr and was eventually sainted. This was a man of conscience and serves to remind us all of how rare and valuable such men are...Yeah, that was an unforgettable play. Another one of my favorite books, on a different level, is "On the Road" by Jack Kerouac."

James "Buddy" McGirt

Name: James "Buddy" McGirt

    IBF Light Welterweight Champion 1988 Feb 14 – 1988 Sep 3 & WBC Welterweight Champion 1991 Nov 29 – 1993 Mar 6
    • Defeated Kevin Pompey (W 10).
    • Defeated Livingston Bramble (W 12).
    • Defeated Simon Brown (W 12).
    • Defeated Tony Baltazar (W 10).
    • Defeated Howard Davis Jr. (KO 1).
    • Defeated Saoul Mamby (W 10).
    • Defeated Joe Manley (TKO 9).
    • After retiring, McGirt has become a highly regarded trainer. Among those he has trained are Antonio Tarver and Arturo Gatti.
    • He won the Boxing Writers of America Trainer of the Year Award for 2002.
    • won 73 (KO 48) + lost 6 (KO 2) + drawn 1 = 80 rounds boxed 537 : KO% 60

Favorite Book: "The Grapes of Wrath" by John Steinbeck

""The Grapes of Wrath" always stayed in my mind. Great book. What made it even more intriguing was my teacher in school. He'd assign pages to read and the next day we'd discuss it in class. It was about a struggling family whose goal was to make a better for themselves. Yeah, this book's always stayed in my mind. The grapes symbolize both plenty and renewal, and bitterness and wrath."

Herbie Kronowitz

Name: Herbie Kronowitz

    Tough NYC Middleweight - 1941-1950
    • In 1947, Kronowitz was ranked tenth in the world among middleweights.
    • He faced Artie Levine at Madison Square Garden in New York City. The crowd of 12,000 was said to have been enthralled during the 10-round battle between the two Jewish fighters. Levine won the decision, although Kronowitz claimed that while Levine "won the decision. There was no question that I won the fight."
    • Defeated Vinnie Cidone (W 10).
    • Defeated Andres Gomez (W 10).
    • Defeated Jerry Fiorello (W 10).
    • Defeated Sonny Horne (W 10).
    • Defeated Harold Green (W 10).
    • Defeated Pete Mead (W 10).
    • Top Referee for 30 years - 1955-1984.
    • won 55 (KO 10) + lost 23 (KO 2) + drawn 5 = 83 rounds boxed 551 : KO% 12.05

Favorite Book: "The Ring Record Book" by Nat Fleisher

"I've always enjoyed sitting down in a chair and thumbing through the pages of "The Ring Record Book". I like learning about all of the fighters, seeing their ring records, learning their hometowns and looking at their photos. You know, back in the day, I knew and fought a lot of those guys."

Jose "Chegui" Torres

Name: Jose "Chegui" Torres

    Light Heavyweight Champion of the World - Defeated Willie Pastrano (TKO 9) - 1965 Mar 30 – 1966 Dec 16
    • Made three successful title defenses in defeating Wayne Thornton, Eddie Cotton and Chic Calderwood.
    • Defeated Randy Sandy (W 10).
    • Defeated Don Fullmer (W 10).
    • Defeated Jose Gonzalez (W 10).
    • Defeated Wilburt McClure (W 10).
    • 1956 Olympic Silver Medalist in the light middleweight division, losing on points to Laszlo Papp.
    • 1958 New York Golden Gloves Middleweight Champion.
    • 1958 National AAU Middleweight Champion.
    • New York State Athletic Commission Chairman 1983-1988.
    • WBO President 1990-1995.
    • Inducted into the World Boxing Hall of Fame in 1994 and the International Boxing Hall of Fame in 1997.
    • Author of "Sting Like A Bee" about Muhammad Ali.
    • Author of "Fire & Fear" about Mike Tyson.
    • Chairman of the New York State Boxing Commission and Supervisor for the WBO.
    • won 41 (KO 29) + lost 3 (KO 1) + drawn 1 = 45 rounds boxed 300 : KO% 64.44

Favorite Book: "The Naked and the Dead" by Norman Mailer

"After I read this book I became a big fan of Norman Mailer and I wanted to become his friend. So I loked him up and we became friends! The same thing with Budd Schulberg. After I read "What Makes Sammy Run?" I looked for Budd and told him, "I would like for you to become my friend!"

Michael Bentt

Name: Michael Bentt

    WBO Heavyweight Champion 1993 Oct 29 – 1994 Mar 19
    • Defeated Tommy Morrison (TKO 1).
    • Defeated Mark Wills (W 10).
    • Amateur Record: 148-8.
    • Four-Time New York Golden Gloves Heavyweight Champion -- 1984, 1985, 1986 & 1988.
    • Three-Time Amateur Heavyweight Champion -- 1984, 1986, and 1987.
    • Bentt won the right to fight on the Jamaican Olympic boxing team but refused when told he would have to give up his U. S. citizenship.
    • After retiring, Bentt became an actor. He portrayed Sonny Liston in the movie "Ali".
    • won 11 (KO 6) + lost 2 (KO 2) + drawn 0 = 13 rounds boxed 54 : KO% 46.15

Favorite Book: "A Neutral Corner" by A. J. Liebling

"My favorite book? Easy--"A Neutral Corner" by A. J. Liebling. It changed my life. He wrote about fighters and understood them. He understood me. Unlike many journalists who see fighters as one-dimentional monsters, Liebling saw fighters as they are--three-dimentional people who laugh, cry, pity, have flaws and are sometimes heroic. After I retired from the ring, I re-read "A Neutral Corner" and appreciated it even more. The man paints with his words."

Jake "The Raging Bull" Lamotta

Name: Jake "The Raging Bull" Lamotta

    Middleweight Champion of the World -- 1949 Jun 16 – 1951 Feb 14
    • LaMotta's autobiography, "Raging Bull: My Story", was published in 1970.
    • The 1980 Academy Award winning picture "Raging Bull", starring Robert De Niro, was based on LaMotta's autobiography.
    • In 2004, "The Ring" named LaMotta the 5th greatest middleweight of all-time.
    • Defeated Sugar Ray Robinson (W 10).
    • Defeated "Irish" Bob Murphy (W 10).
    • Defeated "Silent" Gene Hairston (10).
    • Defeated Laurent Dauthuille (KO 15).
    • Defeated Marcel Cerdan (TKO 15).
    • Defeated Holman Williams (W 10).
    • Defeated Tony Janiro (W 10).
    • Defeated Bob Satterfield (KO 7).
    • Defeated Fritzie Zivic (3 times) (SD 10), (SD 10) & (W 10).
    • Defeated won 83 (KO 30) + lost 19 (KO 4) + drawn 4 = 106 rounds boxed 870 : KO% 28.3

    Favorite Book: "The Case for the Real Jesus" by Lee Strobel

    "I read this book a couple of times and I'm still in doubt about Jesus Christ. But Jesus did a lot of wonderful things. He died on a cross; re-erected himself and moved the rock from a cave. No wonder we're still talking about Him. I don't know if it's all true, but the author does a good job describing it. He gives you the pro and con arguments...I also like reading about Edgar Cayce. The guy's mind was incredible--his mind was like a door into another world."

Maurice “Termite” Watkins

Name: Maurice “Termite” Watkins

    Slick welterweight contender in 1970s & 80s
    • Lost bid for WBC light welterweight title to Saoul Mamby in Caesars Palace, Las Vegas, Nevada (L UD 15).
    • Defeated Juan Hidalgo (W10).
    • Defeated Arturo Leon (W 10).
    • Lost to Howard Davis, Jr. & Alfredo Escalera.
    • Three-time Houston Golden Gloves Champion.
    • The 1973 Star-Telegram Texas State Golden Gloves titlest.
    • Won the 1973 National Golden Gloves championship at featherweight (125 lbs).
    • He was the boxing coach for Iraq's 2004 Olympic Boxing Team.
    • A feature film about his life is due out shortly.
    • won 61 (KO 42) + lost 5 (KO 0) + drawn 2 = 69 rounds boxed 419 : KO% 60.87

Favorite Book: "Edison: A Biography" by Matthew Josephson

"I can tell you my favorite book easy--the biography of Thomas Edison. Edison was the biggest failure of all time--but he was also one of the most successful inventors of all time. He wasn't afraid to try, or to fail. Hey, growing up, I had a tough life, but I pulled out of it. Reading was an important part of my maturity."

Lucien Rodriguez

Name: Lucien Rodriguez

    European Heavyweight Champion (Twice) 1977 & 1981-84
    • Fought Larry Holmes for Heavyweight Title (L 12).
    • Defeated Alfredo Evangelista (W 12).
    • Defeated Jean Pierre Coopman (W 12).
    • Defeated Lorenzo Zanon (W 8).
    • Rodriguez played himself in the French feature movie "Vincent, François, Paul... et les autres".
    • won 39 (KO 21) + lost 12 (KO 5) + drawn 1 = 52 rounds boxed 349 : KO% 40.38

Favorite Book: "The Art of Boxing" by Georges Carpentier

"I'm from Casablanca, Morocco, so one of my boyhood idols is the great Moroccan middleweight, Marcel Cerdan. And I also read everything I can find on Georges Carpentier, the great French fighter who fought Dempsey and Tunney."

Gene "The Fighting Marine" Tunney

Name: Gene "The Fighting Marine" Tunney

    Heavyweight Champion of the World (1926-1928)
  • Boxing Historian Tracy Callis considers Tunney to be 6th best heavyweight; 4th best cruiserweight, and best lightheavyweight of all time.
  • Bert Sugar rates Tunney 5th at Heavyweight.
  • Named Ring Magazine Fighter of the Year for 1928.
  • 2001 Inductee into the United States Marine Corps Sports Hall of Fame.
  • Defeated Jack Dempsey (2 times) (W 10);(W 10).
  • Defeated Tommy Gibbons (KO 12).
  • Defeated Harry Greb (4 times)(NWS 10); (W 15); (W 15); (Draw); (L 15).
  • Defeated Georges Carpentier (TKO 15).
  • Defeated Tommy Loughran (NWS 8).
  • Defeated Jimmy Delaney (2 times) (NWS 10); (NWS 10).
  • won 81 (KO 48) + lost 1 (KO 0) + drawn 3 = 86 rounds boxed 597 : KO% 55.81

Favorite Book: "Troilus and Cressida" by Shakespeare

"'Troilus and Cressida', (was) one of Tunneys' favorites, in part, because it involves a fight between Hector..."the king of the Trojans," and Ajax, whom the Greeks matched Hector after Achilles, regarded as the Greeks' best fighter, refused to fight...In talking about "Troilus and Cressida", Tunney jokingly compared Ajax, the boastful Greek warrior, with Jack Sharkey, whose repeated challenges annoyed Tunney. "Now Ajax was a big powerful man without much brains, just like Jack Sharkey," said Tunney" (Tunney,375-76).

Simona "Romagna Queen" Galassi

Name: Simona "Romagna Queen" Galassi

Favorite Book: "I'll Steal You Away" by Niccolo Ammaniti

"Ammaniti beautifully evokes the lopsided streets of a dreary Italian town. He writes beautifully about Pietro's surprising friendship with the prettiest girl in the village. This book is about the shadow life of childhood. Read it!"

Rau'Shee "Nuke" Warren

Name: Rau'Shee "Nuke" Warren

    2008 U.S. Olympian (in Beijing)
    • 2007 World Champion.
    • 2005 World Championships Bronze Medalist.
    • 2004 Olympian.
    • Three-time National Champion.

Favorite Book: "Manchild in a Promised Land" by Claude Brown

"This is a great book about a boy growing up in the streets of Harlem, New York. It's an honest, true, scary book."

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