Two John
Coyne Book Reviews

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The Caddie Who Knew Ben Hogan

Returning as an honored guest to the exclusive country club where he caddied in his youth, Jack Handley remembers the summer of ’46 when he caddied for the legendary Ben Hogan.”

The Caddie Who Played with Hickory

John Coyne knows his golf history, its characters and the game. He spins a story that includes a mysterious character, a hero, a romance, a semi-villain, and a classic golf match into a believable tale.”

Here are two reviews of the two books:

The Caddie Who Knew Ben Hogan:

From Publishers Weekly:
Known more for his novels of the macabre, Coyne moves onto the links and comes up with a terrific blend of golfing lore, PGA tournament drama and country club soap opera. It's 1946, and Jack Handley is a 14-year-old caddy at a posh country club near Chicago. He loves the game, and his mother needs the money. When Ben Hogan shows up one day to play a practice round before the Open, Jack caddies for Hogan and for Jack's pal, assistant pro Matt Richardson, as the two men play a not-very-friendly round. Coyne's descriptions of the strained practice round and the gripping first day of the Chicago Open are masterful sports fiction, with Jack reliving every drive, chip and putt, adding savvy golf tips and caddy tricks. Add in Jack's entanglement in Matt's secret romance with the daughter of the club's rich and powerful president, and anecdotes of other legendary players (like Jimmy Demaret, Gene Sarazen and Lefty Stackhouse), and the results rank with James Dodson's nonfiction, and John Corrigan's PGA golf mysteries. (May)
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. 

The Caddie Who Played With Hickory:

From Publishers Weekly:
In Coyne's engrossing hole-in-one (afterThe Caddie Who Knew Ben Hogan), it's the summer of 1946 and Tommy O'Shea, a top caddie at Midlothian Country Club, gets a fantastic chance to challenge golfing legend Walter Hagen in the last important golf match of his life. To do so, Tommy must be proficient in the usage of hickory golf clubs, the kind Hagen used to win his first U.S. Open in 1914. At stake is a $1,000 prize that could finance farmer's-son Tommy's college dreams. In walks Harrison Cornell, a WWII vet and former POW, who wants to caddie for Hagen. As it turns out, Harrison has a secret score to settle with Hagen dating back to 1941. As Tommy prepares to compete against Hagen—one of golf's first superstars—he learns much about golf and life from Harrison (Carry your own clubs. Be your own man), flirts with a club waitress and falls for Val, a member's daughter. Coyne's neat plotting and firm grip on even the most obscure corners of the sport make this the perfect treat for hackers and pros alike. (May)
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.  

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