Gateway Gazette

From My Bookshelf: Albatross

By Lynn Willoughby

Albatross ~ Terry Fallis

I like reading Canadian fiction and when it comes with a very Canadian brand of humour – that is an added bonus.  As usual, Fallis does not disappoint.

Fallis is a two time winner of the Stephen Leacock Medal for Humour.  I find his writing extremely funny and even the title of this novel is an inventive play on words. 

This book is the story of a young man whose high school gym teacher, following the theory of a quirky Swedish professor, discovers that Adams’s physique is uniquely suited to golf.  She puts a nine iron in his hands, shows him how to place his feet, grip the club, place the club face behind the ball, swing back and follow through – and is agape at the distance Adam can hit the ball!

Bobbie Davenport is an avid golfer herself and absolutely loves the game.  As she takes Adam on his first round at the Ladies Golf Club of Toronto, she realizes just how very good Adam is at this game, even though he had never previously picked up a golf club in his life.

Adam gets a full scholarship to Stanford University, golfing for the school as an amateur.  Then it’s on to the PGA tour and records fall left and right.  He is just that good.

There is a lot about golf in this novel, and Fallis has certainly done his research.  Yet the overall theme is really how to stay true to yourself and to follow your dreams.  Adam has always wanted to be a writer.  Although he is breaking ALL the records, making mega millions in tournament wins and endorsements, Adam is bored and unhappy.  He knows he is extremely good at hitting a little white ball long distances and sinking it in a hole in the grass – but how is he contributing to the greater good?  Winning everything in golf is Bobbie’s dream, not his.

“Through those books I traveled the world, laughed and cried, learned about life, good and evil, right and wrong.  I came to understand how the power of words and stories could leave you transfixed, transported, and transformed.  This may sound a tad melodramatic, but to me, the bookmobile was the weekly medication that kept me sane.”  ~ Bobbie Davenport

This is exactly how I feel about books, and Albatross is one I enjoyed a lot.

  • The Best Laid Plans
  • The High Road 

……………..and several others

Who Knew?

An Albatross, also called a double eagle in golf, is a score of three under par on a single hole.

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