A heartfelt, sincere, mini–self-portrait by a man who epitomizes class.

A LIFE WELL PLAYED

MY STORIES

One of the greatest golfers of all time offers up some stories and advice.

Palmer (A Golfer’s Life, 2000, etc.) is one of the best and best-loved of all golfers. The “King” (he admits he doesn’t like this moniker) feels this slight book is particularly important to him. Now 86, he realizes there are things “I still wanted to say to my friends in golf and to fans of the game in general.” The book is very conversational, as if he were right there talking to you. Packed with stories and a few tips, it’s divided into three sections: Golf, Life, and Business. The chapters are short, some only a couple pages. Palmer begins with his “tough, taciturn disciplinarian” father, a greenskeeper (and later the pro) at the Latrobe Country Club in Pennsylvania. He showed a 3-year-old boy how to grip a club, stand, swing, and, most importantly, show good sportsmanship. Palmer adhered to most of this advice, especially the last one. He has always been gracious in defeat, and the fans—Arnie’s Army, a phrase born in 1959—love him for it. He chides young pros who chicken scratch their signatures for fans; take your time and do it right, he says. He admits to being a “strong-minded person and maybe a bit stodgy.” One of his “most favorite personal golf memories” was the day he shot 60 at Latrobe. He’s made 20 aces and owns 2,000 putters and 10,000 clubs. The golfer he holds in the “highest esteem of all” is Byron Nelson, but the player he always wanted to beat—“to a pulp”—was Jack Nicklaus. Palmer’s advisers were against him starting the Golf Channel. He said: “Let’s do this.” And that famous tea and lemonade drink? He “concocted it one afternoon with the help of my wife.”

A heartfelt, sincere, mini–self-portrait by a man who epitomizes class.

Pub Date: Oct. 11, 2016

ISBN: 978-1-250-08594-8

Page Count: 272

Publisher: St. Martin's

Review Posted Online: July 19, 2016

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Aug. 1, 2016

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If the authors are serious, this is a silly, distasteful book. If they are not, it’s a brilliant satire.

THE 48 LAWS OF POWER

The authors have created a sort of anti-Book of Virtues in this encyclopedic compendium of the ways and means of power.

Everyone wants power and everyone is in a constant duplicitous game to gain more power at the expense of others, according to Greene, a screenwriter and former editor at Esquire (Elffers, a book packager, designed the volume, with its attractive marginalia). We live today as courtiers once did in royal courts: we must appear civil while attempting to crush all those around us. This power game can be played well or poorly, and in these 48 laws culled from the history and wisdom of the world’s greatest power players are the rules that must be followed to win. These laws boil down to being as ruthless, selfish, manipulative, and deceitful as possible. Each law, however, gets its own chapter: “Conceal Your Intentions,” “Always Say Less Than Necessary,” “Pose as a Friend, Work as a Spy,” and so on. Each chapter is conveniently broken down into sections on what happened to those who transgressed or observed the particular law, the key elements in this law, and ways to defensively reverse this law when it’s used against you. Quotations in the margins amplify the lesson being taught. While compelling in the way an auto accident might be, the book is simply nonsense. Rules often contradict each other. We are told, for instance, to “be conspicuous at all cost,” then told to “behave like others.” More seriously, Greene never really defines “power,” and he merely asserts, rather than offers evidence for, the Hobbesian world of all against all in which he insists we live. The world may be like this at times, but often it isn’t. To ask why this is so would be a far more useful project.

If the authors are serious, this is a silly, distasteful book. If they are not, it’s a brilliant satire.

Pub Date: Sept. 1, 1998

ISBN: 0-670-88146-5

Page Count: 430

Publisher: Viking

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: July 15, 1998

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The author's youthfulness helps to assure the inevitable comparison with the Anne Frank diary although over and above the...

NIGHT

Elie Wiesel spent his early years in a small Transylvanian town as one of four children. 

He was the only one of the family to survive what Francois Maurois, in his introduction, calls the "human holocaust" of the persecution of the Jews, which began with the restrictions, the singularization of the yellow star, the enclosure within the ghetto, and went on to the mass deportations to the ovens of Auschwitz and Buchenwald. There are unforgettable and horrifying scenes here in this spare and sombre memoir of this experience of the hanging of a child, of his first farewell with his father who leaves him an inheritance of a knife and a spoon, and of his last goodbye at Buchenwald his father's corpse is already cold let alone the long months of survival under unconscionable conditions. 

The author's youthfulness helps to assure the inevitable comparison with the Anne Frank diary although over and above the sphere of suffering shared, and in this case extended to the death march itself, there is no spiritual or emotional legacy here to offset any reader reluctance.

Pub Date: Jan. 16, 2006

ISBN: 0374500010

Page Count: 120

Publisher: Hill & Wang

Review Posted Online: Oct. 7, 2011

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Jan. 15, 2006

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