A beautifully written and evocative memoir about family, fatherhood and four-irons. 'There is no quainter or more romantic spot than Gullane,' wrote the Reverend John Kerr is his titanic 1896 work The Golf Book Of East Lothian. A small town of a few thousand people a dozen miles east of Edinburgh, Gullane was a place of such unmatched physical ...
A beautifully written and evocative memoir about family, fatherhood and four-irons. 'There is no quainter or more romantic spot than Gullane,' wrote the Reverend John Kerr is his titanic 1896 work The Golf Book Of East Lothian. A small town of a few thousand people a dozen miles east of Edinburgh, Gullane was a place of such unmatched physical beauty and peace -- not to mention the home of both Gullane Golf Club and Muirfield -- that Curtis Gillespie vowed to return after spending time there as a student. His memoir of the year he spent in Gullane with his family, Playing Through provides the reader with the rarest of experiences: a story rich with comedy, emotional truths and stunning evocations of a unique landscape. Written with warmth and elegance, Playing Through transcends the boundaries of writing on travel and sport to show us the world contained in a village, a place filled to overflowing with life, character, memory and laughter. This is the story of one family's journey, but it is also a story about the things we all share.
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Publishers Weekly, 2004-03-29 In a book that is part golf travelogue and part mushy memoir, Gillespie (The Progress of an Object in Motion; Someone Like That) uproots his family from their home in Edmonton, Canada, and moves to the coast of Scotland for a year to write and hit the links. Stitching together random memories, quaint observations on Scottish life, tributes to his deceased father, tidy domestic homilies and a sprinkling of golf yarns, Gillespie wanders across time and space, and generally gets entangled in the thicket of his own solipsism. Although he is intermittently humorous, charming and even moving, his earnest sentimentality smothers most of the book's touching moments and gives his anecdotes a manufactured, too-perfect quality. The most redeeming passages involve Gillespie's frequent golf partners, two crusty old men named Jack and Archie whose grouchy, plainspoken banter supplies a welcome respite. Although the writing is easygoing, there are some forced metaphors and a few genuine clunkers: "my tee shot, which had been little more than five yards off the fairway, had gone into an area of rough that seemed to be the site of some deeply twisted agricultural experiment to develop strains of vegetation that had learned to tie their stalks in knots." Readers looking for a book about golf or Scotland may be disappointed. Agent, Ann McDermid. (May) Copyright 2004 Reed Business Information.
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