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The Range Bucket List: The Golf Adventure of a Lifetime By James Dodson

Release date: 19th May, 2018
Publisher: Simon & Schuster

List Price: £15.99
Our Price: £12.62
You Save: £3.37 (21%)
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Harbouring sporting ambitions when you’re a 13-year-old boy or girl is entirely natural; making a note of them in writing equally normal. Folding this list and putting it away before forgetting about your once vitally important sporting objectives altogether is just as common.

Such is the background to James Dodson’s wonderfully engaging book, The Range Bucket List, part memoir, part sporting observation, part travelogue and perhaps most importantly, partly a desire to satisfy, wherever possible, those ambitions he noted fifty years earlier.

As a grown (sixty-something) man, Dodson discovered his hand-written teenage aspirations in an old suitcase. The list, “Things to do in Golf”, inspired him to add to it, to create a golfing ‘bucket list’ which included meeting folks he’d always wanted to have a chat with and travelling to iconic golfing venues he had yet to visit. Though he has enjoyed a career as an award-winning golf writer, there were still plenty of places and courses to which he had not travelled.

Launching his golfing venture with a sense of purpose and manifest enthusiasm, Dodson notes that "Life promises us sorrow, it's up to us to provide joy." It’s fair to say that he successfully translates his obvious joy in meeting golf legends and a host of others directly onto the page.

Reading about lunch with President Donald Trump is, ahem, interesting, but Dodson’s compelling narrative moves up a couple of gears when describing his round with John Updike, chatting with Arnold Palmer, or carding a 13 on a single hole at St Andrews.

He refers to golf as a "slow moving game in a fast paced world" and perhaps this is the essence of both his bucket list and the game itself. One of golf’s joys is the opportunity it affords amateur players to ‘stop and smell the roses’, even when playing with a group of friends. Admiring nature while waiting to take your next shot or shooting the breeze with a pal on the way round a golf course underpins golf’s enormous appeal.

The Range Bucket List offers readers a reminder: that we should concentrate on life’s important matters if we’re committed to extricating as much joy as possible from the short time we spend here. Even if you’re not a golf fan, Dodson’s book will add substantially to your already accumulated stock of joy.


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