Tripp Bowden’s new book, All the Memorable Rounds, finds the correct balance and navigates the golf short story genre adeptly. This is a book that is chocked full of wisdom. In a golf world that has become obsessed with numbers and ratings, Tripp Bowden delightfully reminds us that having fun is the reason we play the game. It is the experience indeed. All the Memorable Rounds Captures the essence of the game, and it is ultimately a love story.
The book is a compilation of twenty-one short stories about golf as told from a personal point of view. The majority are written by Bowden although he skillfully includes some stories from others. I particularly liked legendary golf broadcaster Ben Wright’s story and the interchange between Wright and his mentor Henry Longhurst.
The risk in writing about your own personal golf journey is to overdo it with a shot-by-shot replay of your rounds. Bowden (and his co-authors) never fall into the trap of telling you how great or special they are, and shots are only recounted when they have meaning. A dose of humility as applied here goes a long way. The book is instead reflective, contemplative, funny, entertaining and inspirational. Bowden’s own stories are primarily from a course he knows well, Augusta National, are they are the stars of the show. Although side trips to Tupelo, Mississippi, and the Links at Overton Park in Memphis will resonate with the reader just as powerfully.
As those familiar with his popular and touching first book Freddie & Me: Life Lessons from Freddie Bennett, Augusta National’s Legendary Caddie Master, his writing style is fast moving and lyrical. The book is enhanced by his deep understanding of the game and its traditions.
So how serious is a book composed of short stories? The short answer is very. As Mark Twain famously said, “I didn’t have time to write a short letter, so I wrote a long one instead.” This perfectly distills the reason short stories are often more fun, entertaining, and poignant than long ones. Any fool can ramble on, but it takes a lot of thought to say what you want to in less words. All the Memorable Rounds distills essence of the game down to 171 thoughtful pages.
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