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About this book

Billy Bremner: Keep Fighting: The Definitive Biography

This may well have been called "The definitive biography" of Billy Bremner, but it is very far from that. Sadly, this is a another dubious "biography" from Paul Harrison. This is the third football "biography" he has published (See Black Flash and Northern and Proud) where the subject has been long deceased, and yet Harrison has managed to sit on these "exclusive" interviews since 1997. 


The book is littered with errors, is poorly written, and suffers from the author's complete lack of any other discernible research into Bremner's life and career. Page after page of this book is filled with what are supposed to be Bremner's own words, yet we learn nothing of his life and career that hadn't been already published elsewhere.  I suppose the reader is supposed to take the words at face value: but they don't feel right. 


I was quite frankly stumped at by the preface quote from John Charles who died in 2004, saying the book was a "fine tribute". While this may be genuine, this is the problem with this book, and others that Harrison writes. More often than not, the direct quotes come from people long deceased, and according to Harrison, gave private interviews to him years previous. It’s very difficult to determine if these are genuine quotes or not, and raises many questions.


It is also disingenuous to take published quotes from people, as Harrison does, from other sources and claim that they have "contributed to the book".  


All dubiousness aside, nothing in this book adds to the story of Billy Bremner. It also highlights how little editing, fact checking, and quality control goes into football publishing these days, and the genre is suffering immensely for it. 

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