In this punchy, uproarious romp of a novel, the Halifax boxing world — peopled with has-beens, wannabes, and posers dressed in spandex, leopard prints, and tie-die — touches gloves with the colourful world of sports reporting. Both groups need something hot with speedy delivery. Enter a cast of misfits. There’s Turmoil Davies, an enigmatic Trinidadian heavyweight poised to storm the Halifax boxing world. There’s Ownie Flanagan, an old-school trainer who scans the obituaries for odd names and trains men with more ambition than talent. He’s looking for “one real fighter” before he retires and believes Turmoil is it. And then there’s Scott MacDonald, a journalist assigned to the boxing beat – a grotty but welcome getaway that promises to let him relive his own glory days through other men’s sweat. With a wicked sense of humour, Elaine McCluskey conjures a larger-than-life world where spotty turf is defended with klutzy bravado down to the final, unpredictable eight-count.