Monday, September 13, 2010
"The Open Golf's Oldest Major" and other tomes of note
A collectible, a work of photographic beauty, a book replete with history, "The Open Golf's Oldest Major" by Donald Steel (Rizzoli, $60.00, 304 pages/240 color and b/w illustrations) is one of those books you buy for browsing, for research, for reading, for keeping in a prominent place on your cofee table.
This is the 150th anniversary of the Open Championship and "The Open Golf's Oldest Major" brings us back to the 14 links courses where the competition has been staged. From St. Andrews to Royal Liverpool to Prestwick and the others we are there with the incredible historic images from Getty , with the icons like Walter Hagen, Bobby Jones, Arnold Palmer, Gary Player, Jack Nicklaus, Tiger Woods, Padraig Harrington. VERY HIGHLY RECOMMENDED
“Big Hair and Plastic Grass” by Dan Epstein (St. Martin’s Press , $25.99, 340 pages) is sub-titled “a Funky Ride Through Baseball and America in the Swinging ‘70s.” The book swings.
In another less swinging era there was George Gipp, Knute Rockne and the dramatic rise of Notre Dame football. “The Gipper” by Jack Cavanaugh (Skyhorse, $24.95, 294 pages) brings us back in telling detail through careful research. This is a book for football fans of all ages, tracing as it does, the life and times of one of the true legends of the collegiate gridiron game. More than 80 years after his death, George Gipp is looked upon as the best all around player of all those who played football for the Irish. With “The Gipper,” a fascinating up close and personal portrait, Cavanaugh has out-done himself with the unusually fine work.
“Tales from the 5th St. Gym” by Ferdie Pacheco (University Press of Florida, $27.50, 250 pages, many unique photographs) is all about the legendary place in Miami where Muhammad Ali trained and where his legend was born. The gym opened for business in 1950 and Pacheco explains how it became the University for Boxing presided over by Chris and Angelo Dundee. It also became a hangout for celebrities like Joe Louis, Jackie Gleason, Frank Sinatra. Pacheco is a man of many skills - physician, boxing analyst, artist and corner man - -now he he shows great skills as an author.