"The Belt Boy" is a truly harrowing, heart-breaking and brutally honest recount of professional boxer Kevin Lueshing's life to date, as told by himself to writer and newspaper sports editor Mike Dunn.
The opening to the book is so shocking it WILL make you stop and think and at one point I wasn't sure I'd be able to continue - but I'm glad I did and persevered, as you are taken on one huge emotional rollercoaster journey. Following his traumatic childhood, colourful adult life, drugs, women and his fascinating boxing career, this is a knockout book that will have you floored from the start.
So many times I shook my head in utter disbelief and sadness at what I was reading and found myself equally as many times wanting to hug and comfort the young Kevin, such was the brutal childhood he endured.
I thoroughly enjoyed reading Kevin's story (although enjoyed may well be the wrong word) but I did find it utterly compelling and gripping - I was so engrossed from the very distressing start to the highly inspirational finish - it was just impossible to put down.
Being already familiar with Kevin 'The Look' Lueshing as a boxer (as my husband is a huge boxing fan) I enjoyed re watching Kevin's fights on you tube whilst reading his book, shedding so much more light behind the fights and his story.
I can't recommend this book highly enough regardless of whether you're a boxing fan or not - however, because of the explicit content it's definitely not for younger readers or those easily upset. My husband has already started reading it and loving it too.
There's some great chapters in the book about other boxers too, I found the story about Tyson particularly entertaining and I had tears in my eyes at the Benn and McClennan reunion.
No child should go through anything near to what Kevin did and its inspiring to know that he is now heavily involved in the NSPCC to help stop childhood cruelty and he has such a huge belief and commitment to the organisation that he supports them whenever he can wholeheartedly, even speaking up in parliament about the organisation. His pure motivation for writing his story is to never want to
hear of a child going through the same suffering as he did.
This book is professionally written by Mike Dunn and there are also some fantastic photos in the middle of the book too, to put faces to the many names in the story.
Kevin was so brave to be completely open and explicitly truthful about his distressing childhood and troubled teenage years - I have a huge amount of respect for him, for daring so publicly to bare his soul about events he had long since buried and to finally overcome his demons and I truly wish him every happiness for the future and continued success in his work with the NSPCC.
All the fabulous 5 stars!