Bill Pennington, author of the beloved and widely read “On Par” golf column for the New York Times, knows how to interpret the experts and pros for the rest of us. For years, he has traveled the globe in search of golf’s essentials—those basic principles, those elusive truths (and who are we kidding, any trick or quick fix he can pick up along the way) that will improve anyone’s game. He has consulted the world’s leading golf instructors as well as countless caddies, groundskeepers, parking lot attendants, and bartenders. He has played rounds with Tiger Woods, Annika Sorenstam, and Justin Timberlake. He has sought the advice of psychiatrists, physicists, economists, zen masters. And on a particularly bad golf outing, he has even discussed the fickleness of golf with a quite helpful raccoon. On Par captures it all: From equipment and instruction, to the rules and language of golf, to camaraderie and psychology, to the short game/long game debate, Pennington informs and entertains as he gets to the essence of this mercurial game, including golf’s holy grail, the hole in one. Part instruction, part education, part therapy, and shot through with Pennington’s trademark wit, this is a book for everyone who has ever felt the game’s distinct pull—and slice.