Those Guys Have All the Fun by Tom Shales
Inside the World of ESPN

61%

17 Critic Reviews

As a source of blog-friendly bombshells, Those Guys Have All the Fun is a relative dud.
-Kirkus

Synopsis

It began, in 1979, as a mad idea of starting a cable channel to televise local sporting events throughout the state of Connecticut. Today, ESPN is arguably the most successful network in modern television history, spanning eight channels in the Unites States and around the world. But the inside story of its rise has never been fully told-until now.

Drawing upon over 500 interviews with the greatest names in ESPN's history and an All-Star collection of some of the world's finest athletes, bestselling authors James Miller and Tom Shales take us behind the cameras. Now, in their own words, the men and women who made ESPN great reveal the secrets behind its success-as well as the many scandals, rivalries, off-screen battles and triumphs that have accompanied that ascent. From the unknown producers and business visionaries to the most famous faces on television, it's all here.
 

About Tom Shales

See more books from this Author
James Andrew Miller is the author of Running in Place: Inside the Senate and Live from New York. He has also written for the New York Times, Life, the Washington Post and Newsweek. His various positions in television include Senior Executive Producer of "Anderson Cooper 360" and Executive VP of Original Programming at USA Network. He lives in Bucks County, PA. Tom Shales won his Pultizer Prize for television criticism in the Washington Post. He is the author of On the Air!, Legends, and Live from New York, and has written for publications such as Esquire, Playboy, Life, Interview, among others. He lives in McLean, Virgina.
 
Published May 24, 2011 by Little, Brown and Company. 790 pages
Genres: Humor & Entertainment, Sports & Outdoors, Arts & Photography. Non-fiction
Bestseller Status:
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Peak Rank on Jun 12 2011
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Weeks as Bestseller
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Critic reviews for Those Guys Have All the Fun
All: 17 | Positive: 9 | Negative: 8

Kirkus

Below average
on Jun 27 2011

As a source of blog-friendly bombshells, Those Guys Have All the Fun is a relative dud.

Read Full Review of Those Guys Have All the Fun: ... | See more reviews from Kirkus

National Post arts

Below average
on Jun 24 2011

...Those Guys Have All the Fun covers a lot of ground in its 763 pages. It just might not be the fun, gossip-filled romp that some sports fans are expecting.

Read Full Review of Those Guys Have All the Fun: ... | See more reviews from National Post arts

LA Times

Above average
on May 27 2011

...there's some pretty good stuff in the new book on the history of ESPN...

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Christian Science Monitor

Below average
on Jun 21 2011

...it is to be expected some typos and errors would slip through...Still, it is distracting to see the surname of one of the best-known sportscasters of this generation misspelled over and over (CBS’s Jim Nantz is, in this book, Jim Nance).

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Christian Science Monitor

Above average
on May 26 2011

...at 763 pages, it could have been tighter...

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Pajiba

Below average

There’s a fascinating story buried in all this...but this book is probably best experienced by having a friend read it and tell you all the good parts.

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Oregon Live

Above average
on Jun 17 2011

Shales and Miller take great pains to include ego clashes aplenty...

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Macleans

Above average
Reviewed by John Intini on Jun 08 2011

Fans, of course, will enjoy it for the behind-the-scenes look at the often wild world of sports from those who really did have a front-row seat. And while some sections of this lengthy book drag, the highlights more than make up for it.

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Boston.com

Below average
on Jun 04 2011

Not that all of the nearly 800 pages of this book are essential. It stalls on dull minutiae...

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Business Week

Below average
on Jun 16 2011

...no one, but no one, really needs to know the insider details of the bidding war between CBS and ESPN for the services of sideline reporter Bonnie Bernstein. This injudicious lack of pruning aside, there are still plenty of mini-plots worth cherry-picking from the book's second half.

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Entertainment Weekly

Good
on May 24 2011

...compelling behind-the-scenes tales of many major sports moments...

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CNN Money

Good
on Jul 15 2011

Sports fans will be hooked right away, but ESPN newbies will stay for the story of how a once crazy idea (an entire channel just for sports?!) became a gargantuan business.

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The Hollywood Reporter

Excellent
on May 25 2011

The depth and breadth of the interviews make it not only the definitive account of ESPN's first three decades but one of the best books yet on how cable shaped American culture.

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The Hollywood Reporter

Good
on May 16 2011

The overall picture of ESPN is at odds with the funny and chummy This Is Sportscenter ad campaign...

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n plus 1

Good
on Sep 14 2011

Crucial moments in the story...might not sound exhilarating, but by shrewdly arranging the interview excerpts...Miller and Shales succeed in creating the sort of high-stakes conflicts that drive your typical Hollywood thrill ride.

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Opposing Views

Excellent
on Jun 13 2011

The text of this book is 745 pages long, and by the time I got to the bottom of page 745, I wished I had more to read because it was so fun.

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National Post arts

Below average
Reviewed by Eric Koreen on Jun 24 2011

Indeed, Those Guys Have All the Fun covers a lot of ground in its 763 pages. It just might not be the fun, gossip-filled romp that some sports fans are expecting.

Read Full Review of Those Guys Have All the Fun: ... | See more reviews from National Post arts

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73%

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