Last night, I came home from work with one goal in mind: to play as much Dirt 4 as possible. My fiancée is out of town and I had a six uninterrupted hours of video gaming on my schedule. I quickly prepared myself some dinner before plopping down on the couch and booting up my Playstation 4.
While my game was loading, I looked over at my end table and noticed my copy of The Wrestling Insomniac. It was delivered Sunday morning and I took a few minutes to browse through the book, admire the photos and the craftsmanship before placing on it on the table. It had remained there untouched for the past two days and I thought to myself, "I really oughta find some time to read through that." I looked up at the Dirt 4 loading screen and thought about how I had wanted to play some rally cross all day and so I selected my Career Mode to get on with my evening.
Then the guilt got to me.
Michael Labbe, founder of this website, is one of my best friends. I know he put a lot of time and effort into crafting this book and I owed it to him to read it sooner rather than later. I set a goal to finish the book by the weekend and I decided I would read it between load screens of my video game.
I read the introduction and then I raced a race.
Then I read the first chapter and raced again.
The read three chapters and raced again.
Then I read three more chapters and raced again.
I should note that my game had fully loaded between all of these reading sessions. I was bombarded by the menu music, but that didn’t faze me. I was enthralled with the written word. I couldn’t get enough and I just kept reading. I finally pull myself away from the book when I realized I was sick of hearing the same song over and over but after another race I read some more. That's when I decided to turn off my game and the next thing I knew I had read the entire book.
I thought about writing a massive review nitpicking the book and highlighting everything, but I think the story I told above is the best recommendation I can give. If you are visiting this site, you know that Michael is a talented writer. You know that he has an amazing ability to seek out the forgotten history of wrestling and present it in a way that makes you want to learn more. The Wrestling Insomniac is a collection of some of Michael’s best blogs first read here on TheWrestlingInsomaniac.com. He’s added updates for each post and laid out the book so that it’s well paced and easy to read.
Reading The Wrestling Insomniac makes you want to go watch wrestling. His chapter on the WWF’s big blue cage made me want to watch matches from that era. The breakdown of the history of the NWA World Heavyweight Championship made me want to find those random matches that occurred following the breakup with TNA and before Billy Corgan got involved. The chapter on Goldberg’s losses made me want to find a playlist on YouTube with all of them so I could witness them for myself.
The Wrestling Insomniac is a love letter to wrestling. I do not know of a bigger fan of wrestling than Michael Labbe and his passion and love for the sport bleeds out onto the pages of his first book. Am I baised? Definitely, but what you probably don’t know is before I wrote for The Wrestling Insomniac I was a fan. It was/is my favorite wrestling site. I enjoyed it so much I felt like I needed to reach out to the creator and express my appreciation. Little did I know that one simple email would lead to me writing for site and the formation of a great friendship. But if it wasn’t for the engrossing articles and crazy statistics I would have never sent that email and the truth is The Wrestling Insomniac (both the book and the website) represent the wrestling stories that I like to read. It’s about the forgotten or misremembered wrestling history, the “Oh My God That Actually Happened” moments, and one man’s lifelong passion for the squared circle.
So yes, I highly recommend The Wrestling Insomniac get your copy today on Amazon.