Review Tommy's Honour
I was watching Tom Watson’s inspirational performance in The Open a couple of weeks ago and his unbelievable achievements were being likened to those of ‘old and young Tom Morris.
As a keen golfer, I had often heard their names but wasn’t quite sure of what their link to golf was.
I checked on Amazon and found this book, ‘Tommy’s Honour’ by Kevin Cook it was shortlisted for William Hill Sports Book of the Year.
I took it on holiday last week and quite honestly couldn’t put it down.
I had NO IDEA of just how important Tom and Tommy Morris were to the game of golf, in fact, much of the game’s early development was due to old Tom Morris’s work when he was in charge of St Andrew’s golf course, the undisputed home of golf and now, after reading the history of how it was developed I can understand why.
Young Tommy Morris was likened to the Tiger Woods of his era.
The book was thoroughly researched by Kevin Cook and written in a way that brought the human touch to the pages of history. It was easy to imagine the excitement generated by the very early matchplay events between the very first men to play the game and you could picture the unruly crowd running around them and jostling the players with the opposition supporters not averse to kicking their opponent’s ball into the rough !
Whether or not you have an interest in golf, I can thoroughly recommend ‘Tommy’s Honour’ as a both touching and tragic insight of the origins of the game of golf.
It would be a great book to take on holiday with you either for yourself or your golf mad partner !
For further info, please read the Guardian Review and the Amazon Product Description below:
‘The best sports books present their heroes as complex people who happen to inhabit the world of games’ Sports Illustrated ‘
Kevin Cook tells the story with great tenderness and no little humour. He has done a lot of meticulous research and never puts a foot wrong. Tommy’s Honour is the stand-out book on a strong short-list’ (for the William Hill Sports Book of the Year) Daily Telegraph ‘ Cook’s idiosyncratic history of the early days of professional golf is detailed, loving, and almost novelistic. He captures the incestuous, money-obesessed, sometimes small-minded world of Scottish golf, delightfully.’ ‘!unquestionably a book rather than a product, written for love and not lolly.’ The Guardian
The definitive account of golf’s founding father and son, Old and Young Tom Morris. For the first time, the two are portrayed as men of flesh and blood — heroic but also ambitious, loving but sometimes confused and angry. Two men from one household, with ambitions that made them devoted partners as well as ardent foes. Tommy’s Honour is a compelling story of the two Tom Morrises, father and son, both supremely talented golfers but utterly different, constituting a record-breaking golfing dynasty that has never been known before or since. Father, Old Tom Morris, grew up a stone’s throw away from golf’s ancestral home at St Andrews, a whisky-fuelled caddie, a wonderful 19th century character who became an Open Champion three times before running the Royal & Ancient, then sole governing body of the game.
His son, Young Tom, arguably an even more prodigious talent than his father, was a golfing genius, the Tiger Woods of his era, who at 17 became the youngest player, to this day, to win the Open Championship.
He then went on to win it four times in a row, an unprecedented achievement.On one occasion, father and son fought it out at the last hole of the Championship before the son finally triumphed. But then came the pivotal day that would change their lives forever, the death of Young Tom’s wife and unborn child.
The cataclysmic events of that day eventually lead to Young Tom’s tragic death, aged 24, with his father living on for another 20 years in deep remorse.
So on the one hand, you have the story of one of the most influential figures in the history of golf, a pioneer in the birth of the modern game and of Scottish and Open Championship golf. And on the other hand — you have an extraordinary father-and-son story. It’s for every son who ever competed with his father, and every father who has guided his son towards manhood, then found it hard to let go.
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