Jason Akermanis: Open Season (or Open Season on Jason Akermanis)

by |September 17, 2010

Loathe him or loathe him, there is no escaping the ill-informed pronouncements of this most unappealing of sportsmen. If you are inclined to laugh at sexist jokes, smirk at racist and homophobic slurs, if you find yourself nodding in agreement to speeches made by Pauline Hanson, Fred Nile and Senator Bill Heffernan, then you may find this book interesting and, at times, amusing.

If not,  I reckon you’ll be able to decide whether or not you want to buy it.

To help in your decision, here’s what the publisher has to say:

Say what you like about Jason Akermanis – footballer, showman, show-off, troublemaker, (BBGuru: or jerk) – there’s no denying that he’s made an impression in his 15 years as an AFL star player .

Now, after more than 300 games, three Premierships and a Brownlow Medal, the curtain has come down on his extraordinary career (BBGuru: ie: thrown out of club for being a tool). No longer restrained by contractual obligations and free to speak at last, Aker reveals a no-holds-barred look at a stellar sporting career, including behind-the-scenes details of Aker’s falling out with Leigh Matthews, his move to the Western Bulldogs, run ins with fellow players, and his thoughts on the game.

Interwoven throughout is the personal story of finding and reconciling with his biological father – a married man with a family of his own who lived next door. Told with trademark honesty (BBGuru: publisher code for ‘thoughtlessness’) and passion, this tell-all (BBGuru: may include unsubstantiated claims and a total disregard for the feelings of others)  memoir is a must-have for all footy fans.

So there you have it. What a book!

(BBGuru: See? I said I would help promote it and I have. Can I go now?)

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About the Contributor

While still in his twenties, John Purcell opened a second-hand bookshop in Mosman, Sydney, in which he sat for ten years reading, ranting and writing. Since then he has written, under a pseudonym, a series of very successful novels, interviewed hundreds of writers about their work, appeared at writers’ festivals, on TV (most bizarrely in comedian Luke McGregor’s documentary Luke Warm Sex) and has been featured in prominent newspapers and magazines. ​Now, as the Director of Books at booktopia.com.au, Australia’s largest online bookseller, he supports Australian writing in all its forms. He lives in Sydney with his wife, two children, three dogs, five cats, unnumbered gold fish and his overlarge book collection. His novel, The Girl on the Page, will be published by HarperCollins Australia in October, 2018.

Follow John: Twitter Website


  • September 17, 2010 at 3:35 pm

    Love your promotion! Have to agree that JA has behaved in toolesque ways in recent times. Many many years ago though, when he was still at Brisbane and only a tool-in-training, I read an interview with his wife, who reported that Jason had learnt sign language so that he could communicate with her parents, both of whom are profoundly deaf. Ever since, I’ve had a soft spot for him- any man who goes out of his way and comfort zone to talk to his mother in law is OK by me, even if he is a tool in every other sphere of his life. Of course, his mother-in-law may no longer be talking to him…

  • Lions forever

    September 18, 2010 at 10:20 am

    Love him or hate him, you’ve got admit he always calls a spade a spade, something severely lacking in a lot of high profile sportspeople these days. Good luck to him. His book is an absolute gem and for that he should be admired for having the guts to spill the beans and finally get to the bottom of his (so-called) sacking. Shame on all his friends for NOT sticking by him, but then again, that’s the Aussie way isn’t it, I think someone (once) called it the “Tall Poppy Syndrome”.

    • Yvonne Arnell

      September 22, 2010 at 12:34 pm

      Certainly agree with the “Tall Poppy Syndrome”. Where is team spirit and team loyalty to each other? I teach a class of 8-10 year olds who are from a diverse range of cultures, skill levels and families with varying values. Everyday I talk to them about how we are all different, all striving to achieve our best and we must support each other in our varying levels of ability and means to achieve this. We should never criticize others unless we can claim to be perfect ourselves. In fact, a great team or classroom is made up of a group of variable personalities who can learn from each other and respect the differences of others. Only ignorance and jealousy clouds the views of narrowminded “team ” players when they ignore the greatness of others and what they can learn from them and thus weakening the team itself as has been demonstrated!!!! We are all talented in some way and none of us can profess to be talented in all areas, thus respect, support, tolerate and learn from others!

  • Tracey Rumbold

    September 29, 2010 at 4:21 pm

    I brought the Open Season as a gift for my brother but first had to read and find out what he had to say. My brother is a Lions supporter and myself a Bulldogs supporter and we both grew up in Mildura. With my father being captain coach of the Mildura Football club hence the connection to JA. I would just like to say how I thoughly enjoyed this book it actually brought me to tears on occassions. Some times the truth hurts.
    I wish you all the best Jason on your next journey in life and thanks for signing the book for my bro.

    • Simon

      March 4, 2011 at 12:50 am

      Been trying to find you for a while. Not working at the same place anymore.
      Hope to get in touch soon.


  • Alison McDonald

    October 9, 2010 at 1:42 pm

    I thoughly enjoyed reading the book. I was not a Jason fan but the I can understand and feel for him with what he has been through. I would just like to say that being up front as my husband and I have always been and called the kettle black as Jason has been, it is not acceptted in today’s society and so society expects you to be two faced and lie about what you are truly feeling or think.
    I wish Jason and his family all the best for the future.

  • Paul Muirhead

    October 11, 2010 at 12:34 pm

    I bought the book. It’s a typical sports memoir, ordinarily written with a good dose of shock value but no much substance. I only bought it on sale. I thought the $39.99 rrp tag was a rip off given it’s large font and double spacing to pad it out. This is really a short pamphlett dressed in book covers than can be glanced over in an afternoon rather than a tome of any note.

  • iiago

    January 11, 2011 at 10:25 am

    BBguru – did you actually read the book?

    It’s a sports memoir – if you can find a sexist joke, racist slur or a political comment of any kind (Hansoneque or not) please send me the page references as I’ve obviously missed them.

    (I suppose your review might be some kind of in-joke that I’ve missed)

  • helen

    June 20, 2011 at 3:44 pm

    i have nothing but admiration and respect for you aker after reading your book..
    what you and your brother rory went through in your young lives is amazing..
    at least you had a wonderful mum who did her best for you both..
    you told it how it was and the truth hurts for some..
    good luck to you and your loving family…

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