Review of Fedegraphica: A Graphic Biography of the Genius of Roger Federer

In truth this is not a proper literature book, however, the first section of the book has a certain narrative when it tells the story of Roger Federer, a short biography, if you will. In addition, I think the author is (and this is my personal opinion) somewhat like a frustrated traditional literature author, as uses a lot of metaphors when describing certain scenes from Federer’s life, which is mostly reflected in the chapter titles. It’s not something I dislike, I mean, but hey, being a sports book … it’s not what you would expect! However, you do hear sports journalists using this type of literary resources all the time. Anyway, I don’t want to go extend myself too much on this introduction, let’s talk about the Fedegraphica!

As you already know, and if you don’t know you are finding out now, I’m a huge Roger Federer fan. And putting together my two passions, Roger and literature, I have read many books by Federer; I do not want to say “all books about Federer”, because surely there is one that I have not read, but I have read enough to have in my personal library a space only for books about Federer. (Many reviews also published in this blog if you want to have a look).

The full name of this encyclopaedia about Roger Federer is called “Fedegraphica: A Graphic Biography of the Genius of Roger Federer“, as I mentioned in the post title. The book has many infographics on the different aspects of Roger Federer’s game, and it also talks about records in tennis, from Federer and other players, and many statistics. It goes without saying, but to read (or to enjoy) this book you have to be a tennis lover, first, a Federer fan, second, and enjoy reading about sports statistics, third. I am all those three, and therefore, the Fedegraphica book seemed very good to me, but I know that it is not for everyone.

Another very interesting aspect of the book is the images that were used. First, because of the type of photos, which represent very well what is being described, and second, because of the high quality of the photos themselves.

The last point I would like to mention is the use of quotes from other tennis players throughout the book. It seems to me that there is this problem between saying and showing, and that the author, through the words of other tennis players, has been able to show what the world thinks of the Swiss player without having to add any details. There are quotes from Sampras, Agassi, Nadal, … the research is reflected in book, and the quality shows.

I think the only thing I didn’t like about Fedegraphica is that a lot of the data is already out of date. It is the danger, or the challenge, of writing about someone whose career is not yet over. Roger is as current as ever, continues to win tournaments, and continues to break records, especially those about longevity in the sport.

Final comment: as I said before and will repeat forever, for me Roger Federer is the best tennis player of all time, and any book that tries to explain his genius will always fall short. “Fedegraphica: A Graphic Biography of the Genius of Roger Federer” is a great attempt to decipher the secrets behind Federer’s shots, strategies and success in all surfaces. It does a good job, but doesn’t keep up to the current records, failing therefore to keep up with the genius of the Swiss, who currently continues to play and modifies all those numbers and statistics, almost on a daily basis. It’s worth reading, yes, but if the author published a new version in a few years, I think it would be better.  

Summary of Fedegraphica: A Graphic Biography of the Genius of Roger Federer:

POSITIVE:

  1. A book about Roger Federer
  2. Full with graphics and infographics
  3. Amazing pictures
  4. Great research

NEGATIVE:

  1. A book just for tennis lovers
  2. Not updated  

Keep on reading,

GG Klimt

Questions to answer in the comments:
Have you read Fedegraphica? Did you like it? Do you agree with my final comments? Have you read any similar books you would recommend, for someone who would like to read more of the same genre? Who is your favourite Sportsman / Sportswoman / Sportsperson? Please answer all these questions in the comments!

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