Re: best boxing books and why
Sonny Liston: Night Train would be my personal choice for the number one spot. The author takes an angle and runs with it but his window into that world is anything but narrow. You're taken into the different worlds of ownership that Sonny was exposed to - and what he exposed his fellow human to in return (or not). It less than stellar where the fights are concerned, but it's a really decent stab at unlocking Liston.
Charley Burley and the Black Murderers Row. Shed's loads of interesting light on a crew of fighters that you wouldn't normally run across. Lovingly written but not slavishly so.
Jack Johnson: Unforgivable Blackness. Brilliant, thorough, takes no ****. Presents the evidence and allows you to draw your own conclusion. This is a monster book, probably a must read for boxing fans.
Dark Trade. This is the best book i've read about modern boxing. This guy gets Tyson at the crux of so many of the most important times in his fall. It's worth reading for that alone, but the Toney stuff is absolutley priceless.