The story of Chyna – wrestling’s first-ever female intercontinental champion – who showed tremendous personal and physical courage to overcome childhood abuse, and prejudice in later life to establish herself as the First Lady of WWF.
Following in the tradition of the huge bestsellers, Mankind and The Rock Says… comes the emotionally charged and inspiring true story of Chyna – the first woman to infiltrate the male dominated world of professional wrestling.
As a child, Chyna was the victim of an alcoholic mother and a father who starved her. Feeling like an outsider, this straight-A student left home at 15 and took refuge in academia. Graduating from the University of Tampa after only two years, she joined the Peace Corps and travelled to Costa Rica.
But her near-obsession with weight training and success in several fitness contests, persuaded her to change direction. Hoping to find a career that would exhibit her strength, athleticism and desire to be an entertainer, she met with strong opposition, but eventually found the world of professional wrestling.
In 1995, Chyna signed up, alongside three men, for entrance into Walter “Killer” Kowalski’s wrestling school. Despite brutal competition she was the only one remaining after the first week.
Shortly after graduation, Chyna began wrestling for the PGWA where she was voted Rookie of the Year. Yet it was her WWF debut in 1997 that stunned fans everywhere when she joined Triple H in the ring with Goldust and Marlena.
Now an overwhelmingly popular wrestling superstar, Chyna was the first woman ever to compete in both the Royal Rumble and King of the Ring tournament, as well as the first-ever female Intercontinental champion.
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The name list compiled by the WWF creative department included Teeva Gweeve, Phalan, Sheera, Venus, and Tigress. Teeva Gweeve?! What is that all about? Sounds like the name of a female pig in a cartoon. Phalan? Sheera? Why didn't they just come out and call me Butch Woman?
In the end, of course, they settled on the name Chyna--The 9th Wonder of the World--and not-so-little Joanie Laurer took a giant stride on her way to being the biggest, baddest, silicone-enhanced butt-buster in wrestling history.
Brutally candid -- and, those of a tender disposition should note, not shy of employing the sort of language that they just don't like to encourage on The Tweenies -- Chyna bares all in a non-stop expose of what it really took to be the first woman to hold the WWF Intercontinental Belt. It's a classic, sometimes harrowing story of one woman's battle to define her own identity in the face of overbearing, manipulative parents and a world which has firm ideas about how 'little girls' should look and behave.
Chyna lifts the lid off the WWF, taking no prisoners in her assessments of the biggest names -- including The Rock and Stone Cold Steve Austin -- the backstage bust-ups and what happens when things go wrong for real in the ring.
A genuinely funny, perceptive account of the game by one of its defining performers, lavishly illustrated with dozens of never-seen-before private photos and all-out action shots of the woman at work -- If Only They Knew is simply a must-read for WWF fans. --Alex HankinReview:
Yes, the spelling is correct and the Internet even has a shrine to her because Chyna (born Joanie Laurer) is one big, strong woman - with a figure fit for Playboy - and the first to infiltrate the male-dominated world of professional wrestling. Although under wraps (because of a serial deal), her autobiography is bound to fascinate because of her alien and enigmatic career. She came from a dysfunctional family, with an alcoholic father and a mother who eventually married five times. She had teen-age bulimia yet was a brilliant scholar. Despite such academic promise she tried all things physical, including belly dancing, because she yearned for athletics and entertainment. Success eventually came in wrestling - training with killer Kowalski and taking on men at their sport. Here are the screw-ups and confrontations, the insults and humiliations, the bodybuilding and fighting back. Chyna, no holds barred.
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Book Description HARPERCOLLINSWILLOW, 2001. Hardcover. Book Condition: New. book. Bookseller Inventory # 7106696