If you are looking for the sort of controversy found in Herschelle Gibbs's recent autobiography To the Point (read the review here) stay well away from Mickey Arthur's recently-released book.
On the other hand - Taking the Mickey: The inside story - is a far more genuine recollection of the happenings inside a cricket change-room, penned by a man who managed to keep his integrity intact throughout his tenure as national cricket coach... despite the pressure that he consistently felt from his superiors.
The book begins with Arthur telling the reader a little about his background - from his dreams of becoming a professional cricketer as a kid, making his debut for Griqualand West and later Orange Free State, to become the head coach of South Africa.
Following a brief acknowledgement of various people who influenced him throughout his playing and coaching career, Taking the Mickey leads the reader - on a series by series basis - through Arthur's entire career as Proteas coach.
The account reads easily and well-known cricket writer Neil Manthorp must be commended for the role he played in assisting with the production.
Despite his reputation as 'Honest Mickey', his autobiography is not without its talking points.
A recurring theme throughout Taking the Mickey and Arthur’s tenure in charge of the Proteas as a whole is that of transformation (read quotas) and how it was often perceived that government targets were not being met.
I lost count of the number of times he mentions disputes with former CSA president Norman Arendse, as well as his successor Mtutuzeli Nyoka, regarding the make-up of the national team. Also, according to Arthur, Makhaya Ntini isn't the saint he is sometimes made out to be in the press. That is all I am going to say about that, however...
To Arthur's credit, he doesn't seem bitter about the way he was forced out of his job (at least that's how he sees it), even though such a feeling perhaps would have been justified.
Taking the Mickey: The inside story as a whole probably wouldn't be that interesting if you do not have a keen interest in cricket already, but I found it quite a good read and would definitely recommend it to somebody who is intrigued by the inner workings of a top-level international sports team.