There is always a literary gratification when a book lives up to its title. It is even more of a treat when that satisfaction is both literal and figurative. Enter the Gigantic Book of Golf Quotations edited by Jim Apfelbaum. Literally it is gigantic. It weighs in at 3 ½ lbs (I actually did weigh it); contains a massive 777 pages (fortunately the pages are numbered); and, boasts a stout 2 3/8 inches thickness (I did measure it). It is not a volume you’ll want to carry around for light reading when you have a pause in the action of your day or to have wherever you go as a ready reference. I have no hard statistics to back this up, but this may be the thickest golf book ever written. And it needs to be.
Apfelbaum has collected golf quotations from every corner of the golf world and a considerable amount from the non-golf world and citations on an infinite number of golf subjects which he has neatly and appropriately categorized into twenty-one chapters. But, it appears that he was not alone in this golf-related marathon. There is an acknowledgement praising the research efforts of Jared Lafer. (We would like to hear more about his role in this project.) There are, I would estimate, over 1,000 individuals quoted. Delightfully and thankfully there is an index cataloguing each and every person quoted from Aaron (Hank, not Tommy) to Zokol. Curiously, you’ll get to read thirteen quotes from Michelle Wie but only eight from Kathy Whitworth. (We assume this was done for marketing purposes.) Nevertheless the volume is thorough and you can read as much or as little as you prefer.
I will admit that I did not sit down and read every quote on every page, a monumental task, but I did read about half of every chapter. If you are a golf fanatic, it is, in a word, “fascinating.” This volume will be a handy reference tool for many in the golf business especially the media. Whether you are suddenly asked to be the keynote speaker at the annual Masters Champions Dinner or the post-round pundit at O’Malley’s Pub, you will enjoy extracting a few one-liners from this volume. It’s definitely worth having in your golf library on the Golf Reference shelf.