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My Life

My Life

4.1 15
by Earvin "Magic" Johnson, William Novack (With), William Novak

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"A true emotional phenomenon...Entertaining...Of particular interest to fans will be the evolution of Johnson's relationship with Bird, his great karmic partner in the game."
He's faced challenges all of his life, but now Magic Johnson faces the biggest challenge of all, his own brave battle with HIV. In this dramatic, exciting, and


"A true emotional phenomenon...Entertaining...Of particular interest to fans will be the evolution of Johnson's relationship with Bird, his great karmic partner in the game."
He's faced challenges all of his life, but now Magic Johnson faces the biggest challenge of all, his own brave battle with HIV. In this dramatic, exciting, and inspirational autobiography, Magic Johnson allows readers into his life, into his tirumphs and tragedies on and off the court. In his own exuberant style, he tells readers of the friends and family who've been constant supporters and the basketball greats he's worked with. It's all here, the glory and the pain the character, charisma, and courage of the hero called Magic.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
Basketball superstar Johnson's straight talk on AIDS gives his autobiography its thrust and power. Born in Lansing, Mich., son of an hardworking auto assembly-line worker and a pious Seventh-Day Adventist, Johnson comes across as a modest, straightforward, upbeat guy in this high-spirited if sanitized self-portrait. Fans will enjoy his replays of key games and seasons, as well as his frank impressions of his former Los Angeles Lakers teammates, coach Pat Riley, the Boston Celtics' Larry Bird and other players. Johnson discusses his on-again, off-again relationship with his wife, Cookie, whom he married just a month before he tested positive for the HIV virus. The strongest sections describe his retirement, his coming to terms with his condition and return to play, his role as an AIDS activist and the birth of his second son earlier this year. An epilogue contains the rousing speech ``A Message for Black Teenagers.'' Coauthor Novak has collaborated on ``autobiographies'' with Lee Iacocca and Nancy Reagan. Photos. Author tour. (Nov.)
Library Journal
This is the latest of several books about Johnson, the Los Angeles Laker star who stunned the entire country last year when he revealed that he had tested positive for HIV. Johnson here recounts his life, culminating with his now well-known participation as a member of the ``Dream Team'' at the Barcelona Olympics. Since this book was written, Johnson has announced that he will rejoin the Lakers for the 1992-93 season. Not the typical ghetto athlete made good, Johnson comes from comfortable--albeit not luxurious--surroundings and did not have to deal with much tragedy until his HIV diagnosis. Of note in this autobiography is a relatively candid (no names) description of Johnson's involvement with women, which may have led to his infection. This is not a ``no holds barred'' biography, but it will nevertheless be of interest to public and school library patrons. Previewed in Prepub Alert, LJ 6/1/92.-- William O. Scheeren, Hempfield Area H.S. Lib., Greensburg, Pa.
Benjamin Segedin
Until testing HIV positive, Magic had truly led a charmed life. Hard work and an almost obsessive dedication helped him become a basketball star in high school, win the NCAA championship in college, five NBA championships, three MVPs, as well as, recently, a gold medal in the Olympics. With the help of free-lancer Novak, Magic competently recounts his career not as someone coming to the end of life, but as a man still in the midst of things, engaging in such new experiences as marriage (finally marrying Cookie, his patient and understanding college sweetheart) and fatherhood (his second child was born recently, without HIV). Readers won't find many revelations here; the question of Magic's future in the NBA is left unanswered. He addresses his promiscuity in a chapter entitled "Women and Me," discreetly refusing to name names (this is no Wilt Chamberlain catalog of amours), but making no apologies for his former life-style. Like a typical jock autobiography, this book is filled with recollections of many of the big games in his career and profiles of his famous friends Isiah Thomas, Michael Jordan, and, of course, Larry Bird. Magic concludes with several poignant chapters discussing his involvement as an AIDS activist (including a few well-placed jabs at President Bush for lack of leadership in the fight against the deadly virus). Still, an air of optimism keeps this book from becoming morose or tragic. Magic concludes with "A Message for Black Teenagers," a lecture espousing self-help. Expect big demand.
Kirkus Reviews
Magic's second autobiography, far richer than his first (Magic, 1983), for this one (written with Novak, coauthor of autobiographies of Nancy Reagan, Lee Iacocca, etc.) details not only the prestidigitation of the NBA's greatest point guard but also the stunning 1991 revelation of HIV infection that turned Johnson into a world celebrity. To get right to what everyone is waiting for, Magic talks candidly about his sexual promiscuity and his disease. Squelching rumors that he's gay, he declares that "my pleasure was being with women"—droves of them. "I was stupid not to take precautions," he says. The terrible weeks surrounding his November 7th retirement from basketball get day-by-day coverage, as he reels upon learning of his infection; is buoyed by the love of family, fellow athletes, and fans; and makes his dramatic appearance on Arsenio Hall. Magic raps George Bush for waffling on AIDS policy, and he pledges that "I'm going all out to fight" the disease. The poignancy of his new role is underscored by the amazing years that preceded it. Strict, loving parents and a childhood of nonstop basketball blossom into a decade of NBA greatness. The epiphanies tumble out: rise of the Laker dynasty, war with the Celtics, MVP award. The Magic carpet ride goes on after retirement: the 1992 All-Star Game, where Magic proved that HIV-positive and athletic brilliance can go together; the Olympic Dream Team. Even as the book goes to press, he ponders rejoining the NBA, but knows that his work is on a different court now: "I started working for God's agenda. I believe He's got a mission for me—to help make society more aware, and to get people to care." Filled with energy andgood will: a small miracle, given the circumstances, but just what one expects from Magic. A lock for a fast-break to the bestseller lists. (Sixteen pages of b&w photographs—not seen.)

Product Details

Random House Publishing Group
Publication date:
Black History Titles Series
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Product dimensions:
4.30(w) x 6.90(h) x 1.10(d)

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My Life 4.1 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 15 reviews.
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Anthony Escobedo More than 1 year ago
Must read book
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Guest More than 1 year ago
Have you ever wondered what its like to be a basketball legend? My Life is about the epic life of Ervin ¿Magic¿ Johnson. You don¿t need to be a Lakers fan to feel the pain he endured when he found out he could have a life threatening disease or the glory that he experienced when he was drafted into the NBA. Throughout his career as a star Magic Johnson discovers that the NBA is not all glamorous. Even the closest of friends can become enemies in a second and the media will blow any story out of proportion. His childhood was in some ways easy, but in some ways difficult too. He lived in a northern non-racist community in Lansing Michigan and didn¿t live in beggary. However he had to deal with events that also didn¿t go in his favor such as not being able to go to the high school he wanted to and having two very close friends die. This book was extremely hard to put down. No matter how tough Magic¿s life became, he never gave up he always seemed to get through it. If I had to rate this book I would give it a 5/5 stars, because it is such a great page-turner with something exciting on every page. He makes an effort to connect to the reader, by putting his and others perspectives into the book to make it more interesting, without stretching the truth. I would recommend this book to any sports fan, even the most hardcore Celtics fan.
Guest More than 1 year ago
From what i had known before i read this is book, was not much and very little. But now i know who he is and what hes like. I loved reading this book. If u know me then u know that i love basketball too. But i loved how he made himself so emotional in this piece. Aslo when he made his press conference and he told the entire world about his HIV and how he had to quit his career as and NBA baskekball player. This book made me relize that i cant take sports or anything for that matter for granted. I fell right in with this book and i felt very good whiile reading this book. i loved this book
Guest More than 1 year ago
I was curious about what exactly happened to Magic Johnson when he was diagnosed with HIV. I learned a lot about his struggle after he was diagnosed but I feel like he didn't know a whole lot about AIDS. Most of the information he knew is pretty basic from what we know today. He didn't even know who gave it to him or when he got it. The pacing of the book also changed many times. He spent a whole chapter (in the middle of the book) explaining each teammate he had in great detail. But when it came to his best friends in the league, Larry Bird, Isaiah Thomas, and Michael Jordan, he talked very minimally on their friendships. Magic didn't really show me what was going on, he usually just told me what was going on. But most of the book was interesting and I suggest you read it if you're a Magic fan.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Magic Johnson really impresses me in his autobiography. I feel like I can really relate to his life, as I am an athlete and he goes through the challenges of being an athlete. Also, I really enjoyed his explaining of how he felt as he found out he had HIV. I think you should definitely read this book if you are in any way involved with sports.
Guest More than 1 year ago
An amazing and inspirational book, and highly engrossing. Highly reccommended to anyone...basketball fan or not.