I recently finished Unstoppable: My Life So Far by Maria Sharapova, and it was a great read.
A young girl from Russia, trying to make it in the competitive tennis world, Maria was transplanted into Florida, with no friends, only her father around, her mother awaiting a Visa, and her showing immense drive and determination as a child, spending hours honing her skills and power.
Her failures and trials in life lead to her winnings and fame. From living in motels and her father working in the tennis clubs, to the high life of Wimbledon Galas to TJ Maxx shopping sprees. And she never knew where the next opportunity would come from. Whether it was Nike and her signing an exclusive to have her own dress for tournaments, and Motorola using her to unveil the original Moto Razr after her trying to reach her mother on the phone, live on TV, after her big win over Serena at 17 years-old.
Ah, Serena. The rivalry and hatred that comes from Serena towards Maria, started early and has never let off. Serena hates her because Maria saw her at her lowest, knocking her down a peg, and saw the vulnerable person that doesn’t show up on the court.
She spends a lot of time talking out her thoughts over the years, which can get repetitive at times, but that’s what makes the book feel most genuine, and brings a real connection between Maria and the fans.
She also spends some time on her shoulder surgery, and how it changed her powerful rubber-banding serve into a shorter stroke, and during that rehab, she played some of the worst tennis of her life:
Despite the large amount of support and love I received from people in my life, I felt so lonely and small. And nothing they said could make me feel any better. So I decided to resume my childhood habit of writing in a journal, putting my sad thoughts on paper. As days went by, that paper became my best friend, the only friend I could trust, the only friend I could share with.
Which in reality, is what blogging is to a lot of us.
This book is right up there, for me, with Anna Kendricks, getting an 8 out of 10.