A Life Well Played Book Review
A Life Well Played
by Arnold Palmer
Teacher’s Comments: Reading this is like listening to Arnold Palmer tell stories on the porch outside the clubhouse.
Arnold Palmer’s final book, A Life Well Played, is a collection of small, intimate stories about his life on and off the course. There are seventy-five essays in all, grouped under Golf, Life and Business. Each is short; typically just three digest sized pages.
I never had the chance to meet Mr. Palmer, but after reading this book, I feel as though I did. The writing is conversational; the stories are personal. By the end, I think I had a better sense of who he was, and why he meant so much to so many.
The final essay, The Final Lesson, is a good example. In it, Palmer reflects upon his place in the game. He wrote that he was uncomfortable with the nickname “The King,” but was proud to be called an Ambassador of the game:
I suppose, in the final accounting of it all, what I really am, inescapably — and how I prefer to be thought of in terms of my legacy — is a caretaker of the game, just he way my father was before me. Someone who tried to preserve it, nurture it and improve it if he could, and who tried, also, to be a caretaker of the dignity of the game.
I hope you think I did a good job. I hope Pap thinks so, too.
You did a good job, Arnie. The game of golf is better for having had you in it.
I highly recommend this book. It would be perfect as a gift for Father’s Day or for a birthday for the golfer in your life. Or just get it for yourself.
The Arnold Palmer A Life Well Played Book Review was first published May 9, 2017.