"(This) is an example of the sort of searing honesty that is so rare in the self-serving hagiographies that take up so much space on the shelves. Read, again, the passages headlined 1977 and ask yourselves this: Could you have gone through that experience and not been broken by it? Could you have survived, let alone triumphed? And then, when there really is no need for you to do it – could you have viewed your past life with such blinding clarity and painful honesty?"
He also quotes from an article by his friend, Rohit Brijnath, who has pretty much said the same thing:
"His book is a mea culpa, yes, an admission of guilt about recreational drug-taking in 1997 and lies to the tennis authorities. His game then was disintegrating — at one point he played eight events and won a single match. Was the drug an indulgence, an escape? Make your choice, but his honesty deserves respect. We cannot understand sport unless its heroes reveal its insides to us."
The point being made by both the writers is that Agassi being a super-rich guy did not have the need to resort to any ‘sales gimmick’ to increase the sale of his book. And nobody would have come to know about his murky past had he chosen to remain silent.. It takes a lot of courage to reveal something that can tarnish your reputation forever. That he still came out with a confession on his own shows that he is extremely honest. QED.
I find this argument extremely stupid. Calling Agassi honest because he has chosen to reveal all on his own now is like saying that Ramalinga Raju was a paragon of virtue because he confessed voluntarily and owned up to his misdeeds.
Agassi’s troubled childhood may explain why he took to drugs. But that can’t be used as an extenuating factor to justify his dishonesty or to evoke sympathy.
If we glorify this belated act of confession, the moral of the story will be that we are allowed to indulge in all kinds of dishonest acts till the age of 40. We can always wipe the slate clean, at the age of 50, by revealing all in our memoirs.