While it felt very strange to watch the Masters in November, it was still an enjoyable experience, especially when Dustin Johnson put on a clinic for everyone to enjoy. That led me to pick this book off the pile of ones to review since Georgia (Augusta) was on my mind. Here is my review of "Seven Days in Augusta"
“Seven Days in Augusta: Behind the Scenes at the Masters” by Mark Cannizzaro
Golf, professional, history, championship
March 10, 2020
4 of 5 stars (very good)
No matter what level of golf fan or player one is, there is a good chance that person has heard of the Masters golf tournament. Held in April every year (with the exception of 2020 when it was played in November) it is called “a tradition like no other” and very often it lives up to that billing. This book by Mark Cannizzaro brings many of the characteristics of not only the tournament but also the city of Augusta, Georgia.
The title may lead one to think that the book is a guide throughout the week of the tourney and that is somewhat true. Cannizzaro talks about many of the activities that take place before the actual tournament. The chapter on the par 3 tourney on Wednesday is excellent as is the story of a fan who camps out every year on Thursday, Friday and Saturday morning to make sure he gets a prime location – just behind the rope at the 18th green. However, this doesn’t mean it follows a true chronological order of events throughout the week. The closest this comes is the passages about the great triumphs (Phil Mickelson 2004, Tiger Woods 2019) and crushing collapses (Greg Norman 1996, Jordan Speith 2016) on Sunday.
There is also excellent writing about the city and Washington Road’s bustle during the tourney and relative sleepiness the rest of the year as well as very good chapters on some landmarks unique to Augusta National such as the oak tree near the first tee and Butler Cabin where the winner is interviewed by Jim Nantz of CBS, the network that telecasts the tourney. Plenty of text on the actual golf played is present as well. The best of this is the 1997 tourney when Tiger Woods took the golf world by storm. While all of these are reasons to enjoy the book, the overall organization of the book and the repetition of some points, such as Norman’s loss to Nick Faldo in 1996, tend to bog the book down.
Nonetheless, this book is one that anyone remotely interested in golf or the Masters should pick up for a quick and enjoyable read on the aforementioned “tradition like no other.” If nothing else, these stories will live up to that billing.
I wish to thank Triumph Books for providing a copy of the book in exchange for an honest review.
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