Rafa

( 40 )

Overview

What makes a champion? What does it take to be the best in the world at your sport?

Rafael Nadal has the answers. In his memoir, written with award-winning journalist John Carlin, he reveals the secrets of his game and shares the inspiring personal story behind his success.

It begins in Mallorca, where the tight-knit Nadal family has lived for generations. Coached by his uncle Toni from the age of four and taught humility and respect by his ...

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Rafa

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Overview

What makes a champion? What does it take to be the best in the world at your sport?

Rafael Nadal has the answers. In his memoir, written with award-winning journalist John Carlin, he reveals the secrets of his game and shares the inspiring personal story behind his success.

It begins in Mallorca, where the tight-knit Nadal family has lived for generations. Coached by his uncle Toni from the age of four and taught humility and respect by his parents, Nadal has managed the uncommon feat of becoming an acclaimed global celebrity while remaining a gracious, hardworking role model for people in all walks of life.

Now he takes us behind the scenes, from winning the Wimbledon 2008 final-described by John McEnroe as "the greatest game of tennis" he had ever seen-to the family problems that brought him low in 2009 and the numerous injuries that have threatened his career.

With candor and intelligence, Nadal brings readers on his dramatic and triumphant journey, never losing sight of the prize he values above all others: the unity and love of his family.

From RAFA:

"During a match, you are in a permanent battle to fight back your everyday vulnerabilities, bottle up your human feelings. The more bottled up they are, the greater your chances of winning, so long as you've trained as hard as you play and the gap in talent is not too wide between you and your rival. The gap in talent with Federer existed, but it was not impossibly wide. It was narrow enough, even on his favorite surface in the tournament he played best, for me to know that if I silenced the doubts and fears, and exaggerated hopes, inside my head better than he did, I could beat him. You have to cage yourself in protective armor, turn yourself into a bloodless warrior. It's a kind of self-hypnosis, a game you play, with deadly seriousness, to disguise your own weaknesses from yourself, as well as from your rival."

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Editorial Reviews

From Barnes & Noble

With nine Grand Slam victories at this writing, 25-year-old Rafael Nadal doesn't have to wait for the end of his career to be acclaimed as one of the greatest tennis players of all time. In what has been called a golden age of the sport, this mild-mannered Spaniard has excelled even when competing with the likes of Roger Federer and Novak Djokovic. Rafa: My Story presents Nadal's astonishing stories through his own eyes. This autobiography, which Nadal wrote himself, provides our most revealing insights yet about a superlative athlete known for his modesty and reticence.

Kirkus Reviews
Elite tennis star Nadal serves up a smashing account of his life on and off the court. Tenacious. Driven. Obsessed. This is how the sports world has come to know Nadal, the Mallorcan phenom who at age 24 became the youngest man ever to complete a career Grand Slam in the Open Era. What's revealed here, however, is a much more complex figure prone to all sorts of anxieties, and a man who simply would not be the athlete he is today if not for the constant love and support of his extended family. Mallorca, the tiny island off the coast of Spain where he was born, is home base for the Nadal clan, and the cocoon to which the globetrotting sportsman must always return to reinvigorate body and soul. And yet, the greatest antagonist in Nadal's young life, we learn, has not been Roger Federer, Novak Djokovic or any of the other fearsome opponents he's had to face down on the other side of the net. Rather, it has been a blunt, combative man named Toni, his beloved uncle and ever-present coach. Nadal explores the intricate interplay between the two, as well as his epic battles with the game's best, in a compelling narrative that volleys back and forth between first and third person, consistently building momentum and adding depth as well as insight. The titanic showdown between Nadal and Federer at Wimbledon in 2008, for instance, is played out shot-for-shot over several engrossing chapters. Throughout, the alternating point of view and over-the-shoulder accounts provide readers with a stunning invitation into the mind of one of the greatest tennis players ever. A winning endeavor packed with intelligence and excitement.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781401324513
  • Publisher: Hyperion
  • Publication date: 8/23/2011
  • Pages: 272
  • Sales rank: 84,417
  • Product dimensions: 6.10 (w) x 9.30 (h) x 1.00 (d)

Meet the Author

Rafael Nadal

Rafael Nadal was born in 1986 in Mallorca, Spain. Currently ranked #1 in the world, he has won 9 Grand Slam titles and a career "Golden Slam" all four majors plus a gold medal at the 2008 Olympics. He lives in Mallorca, Spain.

John Carlin, originally from the UK, is currently a Senior International writer for El Pais, the world's leading Spanish-language newspaper. He wrote the book that became the feature film Invictus.

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Table of Contents

Acknowledgments vii

Cast of Characters ix

Chapter 1 The Silence of the Centre Court 1

"Clark Kent and Superman" 18

Chapter 2 The Dynamic Duo 26

Uncle Toni 49

Chapter 3 The Football Star that Never Was 58

The Clan 77

Chapter 4 Hummingbird 80

Highly Strung 104

Chapter 5 Fear of Winning 115

Mallorcans 140

Chapter 6 "An Invasion of the Purest Joy" 145

The Longest Day 167

Chapter 7 Mind Over Matter 172

Murder on the Orient Express 194

Chapter 8 Paradise Lost 199

Rafa's Women 222

Chapter 9 On Top of the World 229

Manacor 247

Career Highlights 249

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4.5
( 40 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(25)

4 Star

(8)

3 Star

(2)

2 Star

(5)

1 Star

(0)

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See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 40 Customer Reviews
  • Posted August 24, 2011

    Beautiful

    I'm not finished the book yet, I'm only halfway through, but I must say that I'm thoroughly enjoying this beautiful book. The wisdom of Rafa, his family and team is poetic. If you are a person that enjoys a book written by someone strong in character and morality then you will enjoy this book. You learn how close of a connection Rafa has with his family and you start feeling like you want to be a part of the clan - because it is so loving and grounding. If you love tennis, there is plenty of that in there too but not overwhelming - everything is well balanced. There are life lessons to be learned from this book and it reinforces the love we all have for Rafa. You learn how connected he really is to tennis and the mental strength it begs him to have every day of his life.

    Also I must add that I'm really proud of Rafa. Most celebrities (sports and otherwise) really over promote their books but it seems to me that Rafa just wants to strengthen the relationship he has with his fans and I like that. And that is just what this book does.

    8 out of 8 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted August 25, 2011

    more from this reviewer

    Amazing

    As i read the book i love how accurate Rafa and John express how Rafa is in life and in tennis. A really good read!

    5 out of 6 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 29, 2011

    I LOVED THIS BOOK!

    I really enjoyed this book. I'm a huge Rafa Nadal fan and this book did not disappoint me. He is very deserving of all the good things that have come his way. It was very refreshing to read about a close knit family especially because of all the tabloid families that exist in the new today. I highly recommend this book whether you are a tennis fan or not.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted March 7, 2012

    The Man behind the Racquet The title basically explains the bo


    The Man behind the Racquet
    The title basically explains the book; Rafael Nadal’s memoir of how he became a tennis player. It begins in Mallorca, in the Mediterranean Sea, there Rafael was coached by his uncle Toni from the age of four, taught humility and respect. Nadal has balanced out being a world renowned celebrity while still being down to earth and a great role model. The book goes back and forth connecting things from his past to how they have helped him in his future. He tells the story behind the greatest win of his life, Wimbledon 2008, described as the greatest tennis match ever seen. Above all Rafael shares what he values most the unity and love of his family.

    All the fame and fortune that Rafael has received hasn’t changed him. This is one of the messages he is trying to get across. He was taught by his Uncle Toni at a very young age to never celebrate his wins. This may seem like such a cruel thing to do, but it has made Rafael very humble for every opportunity he gets. The biggest thing Nadal tries to make readers understand is that his family is the most important thing to him. They encouraged him and made him who he is. Even though it seemed he had a tough upbringing, Rafael disagrees with this. Without the tough love he received from his Uncle Toni he would not have the mental state of mind that he has to play tennis.

    The story jumped around too much at times and did not flow quite as well as it could have. That was really the only problem, but the rest was fantastic. The fact that it was not written just about his huge win at Wimbledon in 2008, but how he acquired that place and who influenced him on the way there, changed my point of view of every tennis player being way to confident and outgoing. After reading this it is hard for anyone not to like him. Also the descriptions gave such a visual and were so vivid; it felt as if you were living each moment with him on that court in 2008.

    Of course not everyone who reads this will like it, but it is definitely for “Rafa” fans. Nadal gives the feeling that he wants to just tell his story and who he is, instead of promoting a book or basking in the glory of his wins. He is just a normal guy, which probably is the reason why it is so easy and a joy to read.

    The second best tennis memoir would have to be Open by Andre Agassi because it is such a touching story of what a successful tennis player had to go through to become number one in the world. It is more about Andre Agassi’s history and Rafael Nadal’s is how he deals with life and tennis. Rafa: My Story is definitely a worthwhile read, but really either one is a great.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted October 6, 2011

    Rafa

    Vamos Rafa!!!!

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 21, 2013

    Best Book Ever!

    This is the best book ever! I read the sample in 30 min. and it was epic. Not to brag but I am a really good tennis player and Nadal os one of my favorite player so I bought the book and now it just got better! It is worth every single penny! Buy it, it inspired me and probbly it will inspire you too.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 30, 2013

    Great book. I really enjoyed reading this very informative accou

    Great book. I really enjoyed reading this very informative account of Nadal's early life on the tennis court and his play by play of the 2008 Wimbledon final .

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted January 20, 2012

    Rafa

    I love Rafa!

    0 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 27, 2011

    The true rafa

    You always see rafa as this outgoing energetic guy this shows you that there is more to him than that.i love this even for federer fans like me

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 25, 2011

    Greaa Great book!!

    This book provides an interesting look at the personal side of rafael. Very candid

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 29, 2011

    Go federer

    Great book but still loyal to roger federer!!

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  • Posted October 2, 2011

    Great read!

    This book is a great read, both for Rafa fans and tennis fans generally. It was very interesting to read about the influence of Rafa's family, and upbringing, on his tennis, and to get the inside perspective of what was going through his head as he played some of his most important matches. I couldn't put it down!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 26, 2011

    Not so good!

    I didn't like this book! Yes, Mr. Nadal was trying to be sincere, but somehow it came flat. The journalist writing was even worse with so much phony praise someone would think that he is talking about an exceptional hero. Come on, he is just a very good tennis player!
    "Open" by Mr. Agassi is much, much better!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 25, 2011

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 7, 2012

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    Posted December 11, 2013

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    Posted March 5, 2012

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 25, 2011

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 22, 2011

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 22, 2012

    No text was provided for this review.

See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 40 Customer Reviews

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