Early Praise for Pond Ball Clintock and the Gods of Golf
“A charming and heart-tugging life and golf story. Pond Ball Clintock offers readers many lively characters and mixes warmth, intrigue, and family complexities. A book that can be appreciated by young and old alike.”--Wayne Morden, author of Golf Shorts and Plus Fours: Musings from a Golfing Traditionalist
“The earthiness of Huck Finn, the intrigue of the Hardy Boys, and the ethereal golf qualities of Shivas Irons…Pond Ball Clintock is a fun read for every golfer, regardless of age. My golf library measures into the thousands of books, and over the past 50 years I have read nearly all of them, but “Pond Ball Clintock and the Gods of Golf” is one of my favorites. Zachary Michael Jack’s creative mind, down home writing style, and colorful and historic imagery make this book special for golfers of any age.”–Michael J. Hurdzan, 1997 Golf Course Architect of the Year, author of Golf Course Architecture, winner of the Old Tom Morris Award
“Before video games, the imaginations of dreamers young and old operated without the electronic boundaries of batteries. There were tree houses, snow forts, stickball championships, and yes, backyard golf courses. Recapture your youth and your love for the game, with Pond Ball Clintock and the Gods of Golf.” –Michael Patrick Shiels, author of Secrets of the Great Golf Course Architects and former PGA Tour staff member
“Pond Ball Clintock and the Gods of Golf is a sort of Field of Dreams for our sport. Pond Ball plays the game for all the right reasons.”–Mike Bailey, Senior Staff Writer at WorldGolf.com, a division of GOLF CHANNEL
“If you love to play golf or to watch it, this book is a must. It’s a book for everyone since everything is in it: family ancestry, courtship and friendship, farming, great meals, theology, the world of spirit, and especially “mother earth” without whom we would have neither farming nor golf, work nor play.” –Robert J. Higgs, Pulitzer Prize-nominated author of God in the Stadium
Samuel “Pond Ball” Clintock drew the short stick in life, some folks say. He wasn’t born with a Cadillac in his driveway, a Titleist in his fairway, or a caddy on his bag. He isn’t one of the “in” kids at Harry S. Truman middle school. His best friend in life and partner in crime is his golf-gifted father, Chip, who’s mysteriously sworn off the game, and who hasn’t held a driver’s license, a 9-iron, or a real job in years. Still, Sammy has reason to be happy, what with a mostly friendly goat in his back pasture, a legendary golf course in his back yard, and pond balls aplenty in his back pocket. There’s one problem, though. The course he’s bringing back to life, Mimosa G.C., has been shuttered and mothballed since the dark days of the Great Depression, when its infamous, cigar-smoking Scottish architect Alistair McCrackup last stalked its sand traps alongside Sammy’s great-granddaddy. So when Pond Ball, his diamond-in-the-rough dad, and his best friends Daisy and A.J. begin resurrecting the abandoned lay-out during summer vacation, they can’t help but stir up 18 holes worth of ghosts. Before they can holler fore! Pond Ball and company find themselves struggling to save the divine old course from the memories, heavenly and dastardly, some would prefer to see buried along with it. From pine woods so deep they’re spiritual to cornfields so endless they might be eternal—from 30,000 feet in the air squarely back down to the blessed turf of the magical Mimosa G.C.—Pond Ball and friends prove it’s not what brand of golf ball you play or what golf cart you drive that gives you soul, but whom and what you believe in.
Zachary Michael Jack is the author of many critically acclaimed books on sports and sporting places, including the golf parable The Links of Evalon and the travelogue Let There Be Pebble: A Middle Handicapper’s Year in America’s Garden of Golf. Jack’s golf writing has earned nominations for the USGA’s Herbert Warren Wind Book Award and the William Hill Sports Book of the Year Award, among others.