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  • Straight Shooter

  • A Memoir of Second Chances and First Takes
  • By: Stephen A. Smith
  • Narrated by: Stephen A. Smith
  • Length: 8 hrs and 4 mins
  • 4.9 out of 5 stars (10 ratings)

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Straight Shooter

By: Stephen A. Smith
Narrated by: Stephen A. Smith
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Publisher's Summary

America’s most popular sports media figure tells it like it is in this “raw, deeply authentic, and immensely entertaining” (Bob Iger, #1 New York Times bestselling author and CEO of The Walt Disney Company) book, not only dishing out his signature, uninhibited opinions but also revealing the challenges he overcame in childhood as well as at ESPN.

Stephen A. Smith has never been handed anything, nor was he an overnight success. Growing up poor in Queens, the son of Caribbean immigrants and the youngest of six children, he was a sports-obsessed kid who faced struggles, from undiagnosed dyslexia to getting enough cereal to fill his bowl. As a basketball player at Winston-Salem State University, he got a glimmer of his true calling when he wrote a newspaper column arguing for the retirement of his own Hall of Fame coach, Clarence Gaines.

Smith hustled and rose up from a reporter on the high school beat at Daily News (New York) to a general sports columnist at The Philadelphia Inquirer before getting his own show at ESPN in 2005. After he was unceremoniously fired from the network in 2009, he became even more determined to fight for success. He got himself rehired two years later and, with his razor-sharp intelligence and fearless debate style, found the show he was destined to star in: First Take, the network’s flagship morning program.

In Straight Shooter, Smith writes about the greatest highs and deepest lows of his life and career. He gives his thoughts on Skip Bayless, Ray Rice, Colin Kaepernick, the New York Knicks, the Dallas Cowboys, and former President Donald Trump. But he also pulls back the curtain and talks about life beyond the set, sharing authentic stories about his negligent father, his loving mother, being a father himself, his battle with life-threatening COVID-19, and what he really thinks about politics and social issues. He does it all with the same intelligence, humor, and charm that has made him a household name.

A provocative and moving “blueprint of tenacity” (Fat Joe), this book is the perfect gift for lovers of sports, television, and anyone who likes their stories delivered straight to the heart.

©2023 Stephen A. Smith (P)2023 Simon & Schuster, Inc.

What listeners say about Straight Shooter

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Love Stephen A

Was excited to get this book, I watch Stephen A religiously on First take, he is an incredible person and have so much more respect for him after listening to this book.

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Excellent story from a legend

Captivating story and being read by the man himself really makes it an enjoyable experience

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  • Maurice Davis
  • 25-01-2023

Trash🗑

Just a typical Stephen A. orchestrated ego trip. A narcissistic marketing strategy created to provide opportunity to name drop, while recounting a climb to fame & riches. A 288 page victory lap to poke fun at his detractors. The story is neither telling nor interesting.

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10 people found this helpful

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  • san hargis
  • 24-01-2023

Anger

Mr Smith’s book made me cringe at the anger in his voice and soul. I could not make myself finish the entire book.

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7 people found this helpful

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  • Salvador Guardado
  • 07-02-2023

One of the best books I have listen too.

This has to be one of the best audiobooks I have heard in a long time. The author, Mr. Stephen A., reads a beautiful compelling story of struggle and success. It hits home at times with loved ones and family, while other times builds the beauty of how working hard pays off. I laughed, (while he spoke of the Cowboys, lol) , took note at how to achieve success and cried along the way when he spoke of his mother. I hope he writes another book. I am a fan for life. Thank you for writing this book.

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4 people found this helpful

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  • TCK HOMES, LLC
  • 07-02-2023

Couldn’t stop listening! I listened to this entire book in 3 days.

This book was amazing. I was torn between buying the physical book or getting the audio book but seeing Stephen A was the narrator, I had to get the audio book. This book was so inspiring. Before the pandemic, I never use to watch First Take. I incorrectly assumed because I was a fair weather sports fan, a millennial and a female, shows like First Take wouldn’t appeal to me. Then when the pandemic hit and I decided to start watching since I was working from home alone and wanted something on as background noise and absolutely fell in love with the show and eventually sports broadcasting as an industry. I’m not a sports show junky and can’t imagine not starting my day with sports talk in the morning. Reading this book just solidifies everything I have grown to love about the world of Sports. It’s messy and filled with painful moments but also unrelenting passion for success. I will be buying the physical book as well and reading it so I can get both experiences. Loved it so much!

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3 people found this helpful

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  • T. Herndon
  • 27-05-2023

Candid and raw

Impressive back story on an impressive person. His work ethic and candor makes this story an easy read and immediate motivation.

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  • Sherri Evans
  • 26-05-2023

Fantastic!

I lived on Farmers Blvd. and 143 Ave. near the Conduit. I was walking and riding with Stephen every step of the way. It took me back. Great memories! Excellent book

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  • Mrs.D1977
  • 26-05-2023

Steven A Smith is the Man! What a Amazing Story!!

Steven A Smith is the Man! What a Amazing Story!! what I love is that he learned lessons along his way and took constructive criticism and put it to work and came back stronger than ever! Every young black male should be made to read his book!

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1 person found this helpful

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  • JC
  • 26-05-2023

Fearless

Stephen A. is fearless in his commentaries and equally as fearless in confronting his own demons and failings. I knew little about his personal story, especially what he overcame growing up with a callous father who made life unbearable for his wife and family. What I especially like is Stephen A.'s ability to be honest with himself when he made mistakes. He's not afraid to look himself in the mirror and come away a better person.

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  • The Spencers
  • 26-05-2023

Not a Sports Fan, but a Stephen A. Smith Fan

Just Wow! This book got me through my corporate day and then through my entrepreneurial due tasks. Every step of the way, I felt inspired, motivated, empathetic, irritated, joyful, and most of all grateful for this level of vulnerability. It was a pleasure getting to know this straight shooter.

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  • Jessica Hunt
  • 21-02-2024

Mr. Steven A Smith story amazing

I started watching first take while I was on maternity leave and loved Steven A for his realest….now I watch it almost every day and when I listened to this book I got emotional when he was tell me about his struggles! The relationship him and his mom had was my dream of me and my sons….this book was so good that I was hoping to find another book of his. Next best thing is a podcast 💙

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  • Aaron
  • 31-03-2023

Good Job Stephen A.

Really enjoyed listening to this memoir. It's more than a sports book. Got through it in no time!

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  • Andre
  • 02-03-2023

Fantastic

Great, book. Long but necessary because every chapter was captivating. Hearing Stephen a tell his own story made for a great experience. Had me emotional throughout. One of the best memoirs I’ve read. Well done Stephen a.

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  • Anonymous User
  • 13-02-2023

What a Straight Shooter

Great read from an inspirational man! Can’t wait to see what this next chapter brings

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  • Roberto Bruinhard
  • 23-01-2023

Great story

Really like listening to stephen a smith, his story is great and his story telling is perfect

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