“TIGER WOODS” the book is #1 bestseller!

The book "TIGER WOODS" by Jeff Benedict is the #1 New York Times bestseller based on years of reporting and interviews with more than 250 people from every corner of Tiger Woods’s life is recommended reading by intrepid golf writer Jim Hammond.

BOSTON – HBO has released a two -part documentary about one of the most talented and controversial superstars of professional golf – Tiger Woods. Being a documentary, the producers needed to include attention grabbing scenes, and nothing grabs attention like the sexual escapades of celebrities.

USA Today reviewed the two-part documentary, which included incisive interviews with people who had established a long-term relationship with Tiger. Several spoke of Woods’s search for a mentor to take the place of his Father Earl Woods who died in 2006. The second part of the documentary was creepy. As USA Today said, “When the National Enquirer is one of the sources, you know what’s going to follow is absolute trash.”

If you would like a more in-depth story about Tiger‘s life, I would strongly suggest the book “Tiger Woods” by Jeff Benedict who has written 15 books, and co-author Armen Keteyian who is a regular contributor to 60 Minutes and is an 11 time Emmy Award winner and publisher of ten books.

I loaned the 400-page book to a golf pro in the area who finished it in 3 days. To use an old cliché, it’s a book that you cannot put down.

The book opens with a sexton in a Kansas cemetery receiving a call. The caller said “We have a burial coming your way.” “What is the name of the deceased” he asked. “I cannot tell you that” said the caller. The sexton told her all calls to him were confidential, but he needed the name of the person to be buried. Reluctantly they replied “I am calling on behalf of Tiger Woods. His father has passed.”

The book on Tiger Woods’s life is “comprehensive, propulsive…and unsparing” biography according the The New Yorker.

It was not surprising that the most famous golfer in the world wanted to keep the burial quiet. What is surprising is what happened the next day at the internment. Two limousines arrived at the Manhattan Kansas cemetery with Tiger, his wife, and mother in one and the children from Earl Woods’ first marriage in the other.

Tiger’s mom passed a small urn containing Earl‘s ashes to the grave digger. Nothing was said and just a few minutes later they got into their respective limos and left. Tiger had tremendous love for his father who trained him to be a champion, but oddly enough he never requested a headstone for his father. Now 15 years later you can go back to the cemetery and never find the grave of Earl Woods.

Several chapters deal with his incredible record in junior golf. At the age of 11 Tiger played in 33 junior golf tournaments and won every one. When he was 16 Woods met tour pro Mark O’ Meara and learned the benefits about becoming a client of IMG, the top sports agency group in the world. When Woods signed with IMG, he wanted lots of money and he wanted it now.

Nike offered Woods $40 million for a five year contract but Tiger was not impressed. When Nike told him he would be making more than Michael Jordan he replied “I just got rich, but I don’t have five cents in my pocket.” So to keep him happy, a bank in Connecticut was contacted and a credit card with a $25,000 limit was sent out the next day so Woods could do a little shopping.

This is a fascinating tale of the Tiger, so put a log on the fireplace, pour a glass of your favorite beverage and dive into the complex world of the greatest golfer of our time.

Jim got his start in golf writing with a gig at a Connecticut-based golf magazine, where he interviewed Ernie Els, among others. Since then, he’s covered tournaments for the LPGA, PGA Tour, Champions Tour and many amateur events. His work has been published in a number of magazines including GolfBoston Travel & Leisure, Southern New England Golf, New England Golf Monthly and Rhode Island Monthly. Jim ‘s favorite golf courses are Kebo Valley in Bar Harbor, Maine, Pebble Beach and Furry Creek in Vancouver B.C. and almost any Donald Ross course. Jim can be reached by email at golfer1051@yahoo.com.

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