The son of poor Italian immigrants, with short arms and stubby legs, Rocky Marciano accomplished a feat that eluded legendary heavyweight champions like Joe Louis, Jack Dempsey, Muhammad Ali, and Mike Tyson: He never lost a professional fight. His record was a perfect 49-0. This is his story.
Stanton's narration of that career is uniformly superb, particularly the way he captures the speed and tension of Marciano's battles in the ring ... Here Mike Stanton has told the champ's life story in greater detail and with more pleasing complexity than any previous book has done. If there's any justice, Stanton will have another bestseller on his hands.
Mr. Stanton’s style is like Marciano’s: blunt and unadorned. It nearly always works nicely. But whatever you may think of boxing, it requires periodic poetry. For that, oddly enough, you must turn to the photographs in Unbeaten ... Mr. Stanton is an indefatigable researcher (and seems to have spoken to every extant Marciano). I wish, though, that he’d pondered more the racial dimension of Marciano’s reign ... Mike Stanton’s fine biography may not bring Marciano all the eminence he once coveted—to become, as he put it before capturing the title, 'one of the two or three men that people remember in the boxing book.' But it recognizes, and honors, the right Rocky.
He delivers a meticulously researched and eminently readable account of the only heavyweight champion who exited a savage sport with a perfect professional record ... [Powers does] a deft and detailed job of recreating Marciano’s journey through a violent and venal profession, with a direct style that pulls no punches.