A quick roundup of some of the MMA materials that have hit my desk in recent time.
"The Men of Warrior"
In stores now, this is a book of photographs taken by Tom Palen. The pictures are of some of the actors and fighters featured in the movie "Warrior" (in theaters Sept. 9) including Tom Hardy, Joel Edgerton, Erik Apple, Nate Marquardt and Ron "R.J." Messenger. The 128-page book won't do much for you if you like to read, but if you can appreciate top-level photography that captures some of the essence of being a mixed martial artist, give it a look.
"Let's Get it On: The Making of MMA and Its Ultimate Referee"
The memoir of Big John McCarthy, the most well-known referee in MMA, takes the reader inside the rise of the sport. Written by Loretta Hunt (a native Bonnacker from East Hampton) of SI.com and the LA Times, this one is a must-read for long-time fans of the sport. In stores now.
"No Holds Barred: The Complete History of Mixed Martial Arts in America"
Written by Clyde Gentry III, the book's title pretty much explains what to expect when reading it. So do it. It's quite interesting, especially for newer fans of the sport whose viewing history may not go much deeper than Georges St-Pierre or Jon "Bones" Jones.
"Raw Combat: The Underground World of Mixed Martial Arts"
Written by Jim Genia, this book focuses mainly on guys you never heard of and never will -- the guys who have jobs during the day but like to punch people and get punched by people; the guys who bounce at bars at night but want to see if their karate lessons are worth the money. If the Underground Combat League across the five boroughs isn't your thing, then neither is this book. But, if you're into the "Fight Club" feel of combat sports, then head to a bookstore Oct. 25.