September 20, 2014

Hockey Card Stories by Ken Reid

Hockey Card Stories: True Tales from Your Favourite Players
Buy The Book - - Chapters -

From The Publisher: Hockey Card Stories reveals what was really going on in your favourite old hockey cards through the eyes of the players depicted on them. Some of the cards are definitely worth a few bucks, some a few cents — but every story told here is priceless. Sportsnet’s Ken Reid presents the cards you loved and the airbrushed monstrosities that made you howl, the cards that have been packed away in boxes forever, and others you can’t believe ever existed. Whether it’s a case of mistaken identity or simply a great old photo, a fantastic 1970s haircut and ’stache, a wicked awesome goalie mask or a future Hall of Famer’s off-season fashion sense, a wide variety of players — from superstars like Bobby Orr, Denis Potvin, and Phil Esposito to the likes of Bill Armstrong who played only one game in the NHL — chime in on one of their most famous cards.

Joe's Note: Noted hockey author Stephen Brunt sums it up best on the back of the book when he says "My mom threw out my hockey cards, so I couldn't write this book. But thank god Ken Reid did."

This is a fantastic anthology of hockey biographies. Reid takes the tried and true (if tired) hockey book formula of collecting short biographies and stories of players from the past, but breathes new life into by centering it around a hockey card. We all collected hockey cards as kids and Reid takes us back with a nostalgic trip down memory lane.

From there Reid's witty and cheery writing style instantly captures the reader, making this a hard book to put down. Whether you ready about Bobby Orr, Rogie Vachon or Denis Potvin, or some lesser-knowns you likely never heard of like Mark Lofthouse or Bob Paradise, this is just a fantastic read from cover to cover. He shares not only the players' thoughts about the featured hockey card, but about his career and often a funny story.

Reid's passion for this project is immediately obvious. He's got a hit on his hands here. I am fully expecting Hockey Card Stories 2 down the road (not to mention a baseball spin-off).

By the way, the cover of this book, designed like an old school hockey card wrapper, is just fantastic. Good job by ECW Press all around here. It's too bad they couldn't include a stiff stick of that pink gum that only a kid could chew. That would have made this book epic!


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