Dark Trade: Lost in Boxing: Donald McRae
By L Donofrio
One of the true modern heavyweights of sporting literature Donald McRae is the only writer to have ever won the coveted William Hill Sports Book of the Year twice and few journalists have ever written about boxing with such lyrical prose and depth of compassion.
Dark Trade remains his masterpiece and is quite simply one of the greatest boxing books ever written.
Spanning over 5 years this is a virtual ‘who’s who’ of every great fighter of the nineties, from Tyson, Bruno, Hamed, Benn, Eubank, Holyfield, Watson, to Roy Jones Jnr and James ‘Lights Out’ Toney.
McRae spends months getting to know the fighters and their inner circle. His ingratiating style and passion for the sport disarms everyone he meets and few journalists have ever gotten as close to their subjects as McRae does here.
The author has a knack of peeling away the layers of these hardened fighting men, and a skill for interviewing that almost matches his evocative and emotive storytelling. His profile of James Toney is particularly illuminating, revealing his hopes and fears, and in doing so the surprising depths and frailties of his fighting heart. A modern classic.