Gary Player with Chris Whales & Duncan Cruickshank, New Holland Publishers
Let’s be honest, this is a book about Gary Player promoting golf courses his organization designed, and charging you for it, little more. I would have less issue with this coffee-table picture book of courses if it had been titled, as Player said in his preface, his “favorite” courses. Calling it his “Top Courses” smacks of commercialism and the self-promotion that Gary Player has long epitomized. I felt deceived to find that “Gary Player-designed” courses were overwhelmingly represented, including Raspberry Farms in Virginia, an upscale daily fee facility, the nondescript Sand River in China, or Manhattan Woods in New York. Those, along with some others, are a joke, as they don’t even register on the radar screen of local rankings, let alone regional or national ones. That said, at least the book is entertaining and well presented. There are some fresh pictures of the established courses, and each has a nice, brief historical sketch along with Gary Player’s gushy reviews. At $40, I’d pass on this one.