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Since the publication of Harvey Penick's Little Red Book, the world has almost literally beaten a path to Harvey Penick's door. Hardly a day goes by without a stranger arriving at the Penick home, book in hand, hoping for more pearls of wisdom, an autograph, or just wanting to say, "Thank you." Bud Shrake, Penick's coauthor, noticed that Penick usually inscribes the books, "To my friend and pupil." How could he do that, Shrake asked him, when he didn't know these people? "Well," replied Penick, "if you read my book you're my pupil, and if you play golf, you're my friend." And If You Play Golf, You're My Friend picks up where the Little Red Book left off. It features the same blend of simple wisdom, sound golfing instruction, and good common sense that has made the Little Red Book so popular with golfers of all ages and levels of ability. And, as in the previous volume, Penick's deep love for the game and his delight in teaching shine through on every page. Penick tells the story of his son-in-law's first golf lesson, a story with a twist right out of O. Henry. He relates the tale of a player from Houston who had only one flaw in his game -- that his scores were too high -- and who exploded with anger when Penick told him so. He gives advice to parents on how to help their children learn golf, shows how to overcome a slice by "playing baseball," and shares the pride and joy he felt while watching his pupil Tom Kite win the U.S. Open. Warm, witty, and wise, And If You Play Golf, You're My Friend shows why Harvey Penick has become America's best-loved teacher of the great game of golf.
ANOTHER ROUND OF INSPIRATION AND INSTRUCTION. When Harvey Penick signed copies of his now classic first book,Harvey Penick's Little Red Book,Bud Shrake, his coauthor, noticed that he often inscribed them with the line "To my fried and pupil." When Shrake asked him why, Penick replied "Well, if you read my book, you're my pupil, and if you play golf, you're my friend."Taking up where theLittle Red Bookleft off, this is the second dose of Penick's singular brand of wit and wisdom, full of the simple and easy-to-understand lessons on golf that Penick is known and admired for. Like its predecessor,And If You Play Golf, You're My Friend is rich with Penick's great love of the game, a love that he delighted in sharing with golfers of all ages and levels of ability.
Not since Larry McMurtry's The Last Picture Show has a novelist captured the poignant contradictions of young manhood in the American West the way Bud Shrake does in Billy Boy. And no novel has ever combined history, spirituality and golf into so potent a triumph of the human spirit. There are tough times ahead for sixteen-year-old Billy. He's just come to Fort Worth with his father, Troy, after the death of his mother back in Albuquerque. Troy's drinking and gambling will leave them all but penniless, and he'll soon move on and abandon Billy in this strange town to fend for himself. With only a vague idea of how he's going to live, Billy heads over to Colonial Country Club, where he hopes he can get work as a caddie and where he just might see his hero, Ben Hogan. What he finds there, under the watchful eye of his guardian spirit, teaches him unforgettable lessons about golf, life, love and honor. In Billy Boy, longtime novelist and screenwriter Bud Shrake takes us back to the early 1950s, in a story thick with the Texas dust. Hardscrabble Billy, tough as he thinks he is and smarter than he knows, makes a place for himself behind the walls of privilege at Colonial. He first draws the approval, then the ire, of the club's most eccentric millionaire member, while his looks and manner draw the attention of the millionaire's beautiful granddaughter -- to the displeasure of her boyfriend, the club champion. Billy survives a fierce initiation and a dreadful scene with his drunken father -- but most important, he comes in contact with two of the greatest figures in the history of golf in Texas, Ben Hogan and John Bredemus, each of whom takes Billy under his wing for different reasons and with different results. Shrake skillfully weaves these historical figures and his richly drawn characters into the fabric of the town and the tenor of the time. Billy must face down his fears and doubts, and he does so in a climactic confrontation that combines the yearnings of youth with the redemption of the spirit. Billy Boy is an unforgettable novel of coming of age in a time and a place filled with mythic echoes and frontier dreams.
Since the publication of Harvey Penick's Little Red Book, millions of golfers have learned why this gentle, wise teacher is a true national treasure. With simple, clear images and with words that wipe away decades of overly technical instruction, Harvey Penick brings out the best golfer in everyone he touches, but there is one group of pupils with whom Harvey has always had a special rapport. Unique among great golf teachers, Harvey has worked with and helped -- and learned from -- as many women champions as men. Of the thirteen women enshrined in the LPGA Hall of Fame, five worked with Harvey for a substantial period of time. But beyond these great players -- women like Mickey Wright, Sandra Palmer, Betsy Rawls, Kathy Whitworth, Judy Rankin, and Betty Jameson -- Harvey has taken as much pleasure in the accomplishments of the countless women who came to him hoping only to be able to hit the ball in the air for the very first time. In For All Who Love the Game, Harvey shares the lessons he has learned from all the women he's watched in his seven decades of teaching the game he loves. He describes the techniques that can help women gain greater power, discusses the psychological hurdles some women must overcome to improve their game, and gives his tips for developing the parts of the game where women can and should outplay their male partners. He provides a clear image of the proper swing, gives advice on what equipment every woman should carry, and provides wisdom, inspiration, and sound instruction for anyone hoping to improve her game. With the same blend of sage advice and common sense that made his first two books such an essential part of every golfer's library, Harvey shows how every woman, whatever her other athletic gifts might be, can play great golf and enjoy it to its fullest. Harvey has often said that the day he stops learning is the day he'll quit teaching. Fortunately for us all, that day is still a long way in the future for America's best-loved teacher of the greatest game of all.
His gentle demeanor and timeless wisdom made Harvey Penick America's best-loved teacher of the game of golf. From his lesson tee at the Austin Country Club, he taught several generations of champions and high-handicappers, pros and amateurs alike. All who came in contact with him came away with their grips improved, their souls refreshed, and their hearts gladdened by his love of teaching and his eagerness to serve. At the time of his death in April 1995, Harvey was well along in the work on this, his fourth book of golf instruction. Like his classic Little Red Book, The Game for a Lifetime is filled not so much with swing tips and stance aids but with a timeless philosophy that seeks to improve your play by improving how you feel about your game. The secret of Harvey's teaching lies not in any techniques he prescribes but in how the stories and advice and parables he shares point the way for anyone to play better golf by being a better golfer. In The Game for a Lifetime, Harvey tells us about the different methods he used to help his pupils find twenty more yards off the tee; about the incredible swing of Leaping Lucifer who did everything wrong when he stood over the ball, but whom Harvey helped to find contentment and joy both on and off the course; and about the sweet-swinging pupils whose swings he could remember and recognize without having seen them for thirty-odd years. He spends much of the book advising "the seasoned player" -- whose seasoning is measured not in years but in experience on the links and at the practice tee. His highest praise goes not to any of the champions he trained or Hall of Famers he worked with but to his wife, Helen, who stood by him in thick and thin during his seven decades of service to the game he loved. And the book concludes with the tribute his son, Tinsley, paid him at a gathering of the world's best golf teachers during the week of the 1995 Ryder Cup. Harvey always said he knew that the teachings in his books have stood the test of time. His was truly a lifetime spent pursuing the best the game has to offer us: physically, emotionally, spiritually. The Game for a Lifetime is a fitting testament from this remarkable man.
The collected wisdom of the game's greatest teacher.The legendary Harvey Penick worked with an amazing array of champions over the course of nearly a century, sharing his invaluable wisdom with golfers of every level. In 1992, at the age of eighty-seven, he offered the world a timeless collection of advice and anecdotes entitled Harvey Penick's Little Red Book, which went on to become the bestselling sports book of all time. Unlike so many other instructors, Penick was able to dispense with the technical jargon and communicate the very essence of the game. He went on to write three more books, all bestsellers, and all filled with thoughts, stories, and golf advice that has stood the test of time. Now Bud Shrake, Harvey's friend and collaborator, gathers together the very best pointers, portraits, and parables from all four of Harvey's previous works. Filled with nuggets of wisdom and enhanced with dozens of personal photographs and keepsakes from the Penick family scrapbooks, The Wisdom of Harvey Penick is a lasting treasure from the most beloved teacher in all of golf.
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