DOGLEG MADNESS by Mike Bryan

DOGLEG MADNESS

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KIRKUS REVIEW

From Bryan (a writer for Golf Magazine and co-author, with Keith Hernandez, of If at First), an affectionate, if low-key, glimpse at the world of golf. Growing up in Houston, Bryan found golf an unquestioned part of his life--from caddying to playing with his father--and, even during college, he never forgot the game. He picked it up again in the early 70's, got accredited to Golf Magazine, and has routinely played (and watched the pros play) some of the finest courses in America. Only problem is, he confesses, he's a hacker. A duffer. Cursed with a picture-perfect swing that brings manifestly imperfect results, he'd decided to give up golf after hooking, shanking, and bogeying his way to scores as high as 105. This memoir is about his perseverance in the game. It's also the contrasting tales of two golf tournaments in 1986. There's the US Open, held at the Shinnecock Hills Golf Club on Long Island and won eventually by Ray Floyd (his first-ever Open, at age 43, after 22 tries). Bryan's account here is mainly interesting for his asides--about Jack Nicklaus' smoking, Johnny Miller's ""quit"" factor, Greg Norman's rage at the gallery, etc. And then there's the nine-hole Ozona Invitational, near little Ozona, Tex.,; it's a long way away from Shinnecock Hills, and Bryan draws some pleasing and humorous contrasts between the beer-drinking, down-home foursome and the edgy pros up North. Despite a bit of near-incomprehensible (to non-golfers) jargon (""The prophylactic wedges warp the hosel into a position way behind the clubface so that it's impossible to hit the hosel first""), then: a savvy, sprightly, and loving golf memoir.

Pub Date: April 27th, 1988
ISBN: 087113330X
Publisher: Atlantic Monthly--dist. by Little, Brown