Orr: My Story by Bobby OrrOrr: My Story by Bobby Orr

Orr: My Story

byBobby Orr

Hardcover | October 15, 2013

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One of the greatest sports figures of all time at last breaks his silence in a memoir as unique as the man himself. 

Number 4. It is just about the most common number in hockey, but invoke that number and you can only be talking about one player -- the man often referred to as the greatest ever to play the game: Bobby Orr.

From 1966 through the mid-70s he could change a game just by stepping on the ice. Orr could do things that others simply couldn’t, and while teammates and opponents alike scrambled to keep up, at times they could do little more than stop and watch. Many of his records still stand today and he remains the gold standard by which all other players are judged.  Mention his name to any hockey fan – or to anyone in New England – and a look of awe will appear.

But skill on the ice is only a part of his story. All of the trophies, records, and press clippings leave unsaid as much about the man as they reveal. They tell us what Orr did, but don’t tell us what inspired him, who taught him, or what he learned along the way. They don’t tell what it was like for a shy small-town kid to become one of the most celebrated athletes in the history of the game, all the while in the full glare of the media. They don’t tell us what it was like when the agent he regarded as his brother betrayed him and left him in financial ruin, at the same time his battered knee left him unable to play the game he himself had redefined only a few seasons earlier. They don’t tell about the players and people he learned to most admire along the way. They don’t tell what he thinks of the game of hockey today.

Orr himself has never put all this into words, until now. After decades of refusing to speak of his past in articles or “authorized” biographies, he finally tells his story, because he has something to share: “I am a parent and a grandparent and I believe that I have lessons worth passing along.” 

In the end, this is not just a book about hockey. The most meaningful biographies and memoirs rise above the careers out of which they grew. Bobby Orr’s life goes far deeper than Stanley Cup rings, trophies and recognitions. His story is not only about the game, but also the age in which it was played. It’s the story of a small-town kid who came to define its highs and lows, and inevitably it is a story of the lessons he learned along the way.

Bobby Orr, born in Parry Sound, Ontario, in 1948, played for the Boston Bruins from 1966 through 1976, and helped lead the Bruins to the Stanley Cup championship in 1970 and 1972, and to the finals in 1974. He also played two years for the Chicago Blackhawks. He is widely regarded as one of the greatest hockey players – maybe the great...
Title:Orr: My StoryFormat:HardcoverDimensions:304 pages, 9.35 × 6.37 × 1.13 inPublished:October 15, 2013Publisher:Penguin CanadaLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0670066974

ISBN - 13:9780670066971

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Rated 4 out of 5 by from incred Orr fan. great to read more about him
Date published: 2017-07-07
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Liked it Fantastic story of one of the greatest players on the ice
Date published: 2017-04-16
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Great Book! Bought as a gift for my father-in-law.
Date published: 2017-04-07
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Great book Great book. Recommended read for any hockey fans.
Date published: 2016-12-17
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Orr...not? As a HUGE Bobby Orr fan I was really looking forward to reading this especially as I had just read both Mark Howe's and Bard Park's terrific autobios. This falls so flat as Orr seems very reluctant to reveal anything about the players he played with and against. When he talks about the modern game or his knee surgeries then we get much more of the story behind the story.
Date published: 2016-11-21
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Great Read About Bobby Orr I really enjoyed reading this book. He tells his life story from growing up in a small town in Port Perry, Ontario. He tells about they people and coaches who he met on the way who helped him from when he played in the minors, up to the juniors when he played with the Oshawa Generals and finally his years playing with the Boston Bruins. Interesting that he was recruited rather then being drafted in the NHL. He also talks about Scotty Bowman who has scouting him. He also mentions about Grapes (Don Cherry) and his relationship with Alan Eagleson. It is a must read if you are a Bobby Orr fan.
Date published: 2016-05-19
Rated 5 out of 5 by from A MUST for ALL HOCKEY FANS I read this book and didn't realize how much I didn't know about Bobby Orr. I also found out things about hockey that impacts not only the player but the family as well and billets (people who the player lives with while playing in another town / city). I think that if you are a Bruins fan this book is not only for you but EVERY hockey fan including those who are not a Bruins fan.
Date published: 2016-01-18
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Great Book If you're a hockey fan then this book is for you. Even if you want a great read and you're a Canadian or sport fan then this book is for you. Bobby Orr is one of the best NHL players of all time, and he tells his story from beginning to end. Orr is a true gentleman in all senses as you will tell in this book, he isn't cocky when he talks about his successful career. A great read, too bad his career was cut short due to injuries.
Date published: 2016-01-02
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Bobby Orr With a Boston Bruins vs. Montreal Canadians National Hockey League (NHL) playoff round on the horizon, why not read Bobby Orr's book now? His book offers a fitting backdrop to their fierce rivalry. I was born at the right time for full Bobby Orr fan appreciation. I was eight years old in 1970 when he scored the goal captured forever in the famous photograph on the cover of his book. In the years that followed I cheered for him and Boston against my least favourite team at the time—those Montreal Canadians. My memories of that time and the similarities in our small-town Ontario upbringing meant I settled into Orr's book with a comfortable sense of nostalgia. His recollections of his childhood carried me right back in time to my youth. I smiled thinking about skating—in hand-me-down skates—outside for hours and hours until my toes ached in the cold. I remembered the free-spirited play of children at the time. "In those days," Orr wrote, "we rarely waited for an adult to organize our social time or sports experiences. We took that upon ourselves. We were the ones who decided which game to play, where to play it, when to assemble, and who would be on whose team." "I can remember my absolute joy when I received my very first pair of new skates." up to that point - hand-me-down or bought second hand. Yes, one of the greatest learned on used skates." If you're looking for shocking new insights, late-life confessions or gossip about former teammates, you won't find it in this book. Even Alan Eagleson gets a fairer shake than he deserved. I admit that Bobby Orr has a challenge in finding something new from his well-documented life to share with an audience, but I think he could have revealed himself to readers a little more. He writes: "I'm no different than anyone else—there are things I did at certain times during my career that I am not particularly proud of. Some of those things happened on the ice, some off it." That's like a friend whispering to you that they have a secret, but then refusing to tell it. What weren't you proud of, Bobby Orr? We want to know. So, no skulduggery, just a life story told with charming simplicity. He writes of his family life in Parry Sound and his first jobs: picking dew worms for bait, selling men's wear and doing custodial work at an elementary school. He describes his early hockey years in Oshawa and his NHL career where he played the game with the puck on his stick as often as possible. He offers advice to young players contemplating a career in professional hockey: "Any skill or skill set is the result of a combination of a couple of things. First, you must have an ability to do it, and second, you must have a willingness to pay the price to perfect it." He counsels the parents of those players to not try to live their lives through the child's success because it never works: "I was shaped by my own passion." He offers his insights into the game, past and present. He remembers a time when coaches "acted like gentlemen as they were leading the team, and they encouraged players to act appropriately, both on and off the ice." Orr received some writing support from Vern Stenlund, but Stenlund says: "The words and thoughts in this book are all Bobby's, from start to finish." It's Bobby's voice all right, and Stenlund drew out stories and memories from him, but in some cases the story telling could have been stronger. Several times Orr describes occasions as ". . . a very special evening indeed" without detail or explanations about what made it special. What made it special, Bobby Orr? We want to know. Bobby Orr's shy, humble personality shines through his story and solidifies my respect for him as a person and a player. He is a naturally gifted athlete who believes that ". . . sports are not there for the gifted. They're there for everyone." He's an NHL all-time-great who learned to skate on used skates and played baseball in the summer. He's a human being who trusted and got burnt and who picked himself up and carried on. "The important things in life don't change when your luck turns against you, and those things are no different for celebrities than they are for anyone else. No one is going to succeed without taking their lumps. No one is going to succeed on their own either—what sometimes looks like an individual accomplishment is always the result of a team effort. And when you get knocked down, there really is only one thing to do." (For more on Bobby Orr, please read Searching for Bobby Orr by Stephen Brunt. Or anything by Stephen Brunt, for that matter.)
Date published: 2014-04-30
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Easy read An easy biography to get through.  Gives a clean and simple overview of Orr's life in hockey.  Memorable parts were the dealings with Eagleson and relationship with Don Cherry.  Certainly the book talked about hockey but also the life lessons that Orr lived by.  Underlying tone of a great hockey player who seems to go out of his way to deflect any and all accolades about himself
Date published: 2014-01-11
Rated 5 out of 5 by from a true hockey legend My husband was always a huge Bobby Orr fan and as a young boy was able to attend one of Bobby Orr's hockey camps. When my husband played minor hockey he proudly wore #4. One of his prized possessions is a photo of him with Bobby taken when he was at the hockey camp. I gave him the book for Christmas. He has not read it yet but I am sure he will be thrilled with it when he does. I plan to read it as well
Date published: 2014-01-07
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Bobby Orr I think this book is a must read for all parents who are trying  [or have ]  their kids in competitive hockey. Too bad they can't play for fun and for the love of the game.
Date published: 2014-01-06
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Unfinished but still worth reading I was never a huge Bobby Orr fan but I do acknowledge that he was the greatest player of all time and I am glad I was alive to see him play. And so, I was hoping to learn a lot more about Orr and his time in the NHL than is written. This book seems like it's just part one to me. I realize that any celebrity, athlete or other famous person has had enough experiences to fill encyclopedias and it can't all be put down on paper but some of those other experiences need to be told to let the reader experience what it was like to be Bobby Orr. For example, Orr doesn't relate what it was like on and off the ice with his Bruin teammates and how he got along with them. A lot of funny stories from these times would have helped to lighten the mood of the book because it is a very serious book to read. He barely mentions his wife or family so I have no idea when he got married or how old he was at the time or how those new responsibilities affected his career or life. There are photos of xrays of his old and new knees but this is never mentioned in the book so I also don't know if he is still in pain or can now walk better or if he can even skate anymore. When I finished the book, I was left with a lot of unanswered questions about Bobby Orr. His experiences as a child were written in great detail and were interesting but the detail seemed to disappear once he entered the NHL and those are the times that we fans really want to know about. I hope this was only part one and part two will be published soon!
Date published: 2014-01-03
Rated 2 out of 5 by from Was Just OK For me, this was a slow moving book and not what I was expecting. Lots of comparisons of hockey between then and now.
Date published: 2013-12-08
Rated 4 out of 5 by from A must for all hockey fans! Just finished and a must read for all hockey fans or people who want to read the story of a role model who is also a good man.
Date published: 2013-11-18
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Easy Read I pre-ordered this book as I have been a fan of Bobby Orr since he began playing hockey for the Bruins. This is a straight-forward no-nonsense account by a humble man. It's his story, more about his life than hockey although hockey is wound into each part. Congratulations to him for standing up for his own beliefs and principles.
Date published: 2013-11-13
Rated 1 out of 5 by from Boring Read This book did not change my thoughts on Bobby Orr. He was a great hockey player to watch and he seems to be a fine person with many good characteristics. The book is earnest with lots of good life experience advice, however it is a very boring read that reveals little else about the author or the supporting characters in his life.
Date published: 2013-11-11
Rated 5 out of 5 by from An excellent read by one of hockey's most famous and respected player. An excellent book by a player who revolutionized the game particularly from the defence position. A good read of how he developed his passion for the game of hockey and overcame the numerous obstacles that he encountered in his career. He also has some good insights in how the game is played today and suggests some noteworthy improvements in both the playing and teaching the modern game.
Date published: 2013-11-11

Editorial Reviews

“A reflection on the nostalgia of playing hockey on frozen ponds growing up in Parry Sound, Ontario, the physical and emotional pain of knee injuries that cut his career short, and the off-ice struggles that the legendary Boston Bruins defenceman hasn’t talked much about … A how-to book by a grandparent about how parents, coaches, and children should approach the sport.” - The Canadian Press“A must-read for anyone who fondly remembers the glory years of the Big Bad Bruins … Read Orr. It’s like reminiscing with an old friend.” - The Sun Chronicle