Reviews of Sweet Fighting Man: Volume II


BOXING YEAR BOOK (Phil Sharkey):

"I feel the success of Melanie's books is the mix of contenders and champions (stretching back to the 1940s) that she interviews.  Melanie lets her subjects talk freely about their boxing careers and generally tell their life-stories straight from the heart.  Maybe, because she is a woman, the boxers drop their guard a little so they open up more, but I believe it is her compassion and respect that has led the Sweet Fighting Men [and woman - Jane Couch features in this volume] to feel they can trust her with their memories.  As Melanie says in her book, "Books last forever and boxing is a short career.  One of the many things that keep me passionately driven as a boxing writer is the knowledge that, by writing books about boxers, I am in some way immortalising my subjects."



"Winning Formula Works Again - 'If it ain't broke, don't fix it', would seem to be the eminently sensible course adopted by Melanie 'Sweet Writing Woman' Lloyd in her follow-up volume to her outstanding Sweet Fighting Man.  A strong candidate for best British boxing book of the year.  Incredibly, the author is apparently ineligible to join the men-only Boxing Writers Club, despite producing some of the msot valuable writing on the sport currently available."


MARK TAHA (Longstanding LEBA member, boxing fan and reviewer):

Melanie Lloyd's books could be called the British versions of Peter Heller's In This Corner.  She doesn't only interview ex-champions.  She has fewer but longer interviews, and she is a better writer.  Melanie writes from the heart.  Her interviews are as much human interest as boxing journalism.  She admits to being passionately driven, and it shows.  For example, one of Melanie's interview subjects is, Tony Booth (no relation of a certain wife), a journeyman who notched up his 150th fight as the book went to print.  Tony was an opponent of men like Crawford Ashley and James Cook.  Melanie describes Tony as 'a born comedian.'  Tony sums up Melanie as 'tougher than us.'  I highly recommend this book, although there must be at least one typo.  I can't believe that Melanie is in her 40s!"


SURREY COMET (John Payne):

"In what is primarily viewed as a man's world, Melanie is able to get a unique take on her subjects - probably getting more of an insight into the boxers' thoughts than the average man could, and providing quite a few laugh-out-loud moments.  She gets the boxers to tell their stories as they see it, but Lloyd's commentary is such that you almost feel as though you are eavesdropping on her conversations with them."







Sweet Touch Publishing Company