For those tennis players who read fiction there is something new and rather rare on the horizon: a novel that is a tennis story. In addition, there are many tennis “how to’s” and life stories that are worth reading.
Written by Joe Samuel Starnes, a friend of Joe McAleer’s (but don’t hold that against him!), Red Dirt is the story of Jaxie Skinner, an unlikely professional tennis player from a blue-collar family in the sticks of rural Georgia who takes up the game at the age of three when his father scrapes a court out of the red clay behind their farmhouse. The book was just released and is available at Amazon.com
I have read the book and it is enjoyable. According to the promotional material, “A fascinating study of tennis, its demands and tactics, as well as a look at the insular and often selfish character required to reach the pinnacle of the sport, Red Dirt is the Rocky of tennis novels.”
My “Senior Tennis” Book
Online and tennis shop sales have now reached 350 for my newly-published book. Thanks to all who have bought and said kind words. For more info, click on the link in the upper-right corner.
Some Other Tennis Books
(brief highlights from Chapter 8 of my book)
Jeff Greenwald: “The Best Tennis of Your Life”
For the tennis player looking to improve the mental part of their game, there is a great little book I have been reading and re-reading.
Joel Drucker: Jimmy Connors Saved My Life
Written by noted tennis columnist (and fellow Newk Camper) Joel Drucker, this is labeled a personal biography; but is equally a semi-biography of Jimmy Connors.
Brad Gilbert: Winning Ugly
Brad Gilbert’s classic tennis instructional book is for the thinking tennis player — one who wants not only to improve his physical, but mental skills on the court.
Pat McEnroe: “Hardcourt Confidential”
This is a good read. It is interesting insight into the life of someone “near the top” of the game and how he lived life in the shadow of his flamboyant brother.
Raphael Nadal: “Rafa: My Story”
This is the co-authored autobiography of Rafael Nadal and is a very interesting tennis story. Rafa details how he grew up on a somewhat isolated Spanish island with his Uncle Toni being his life-long, hard-driving coach.
Pete Sampras: “A Champion’s Mind”
This book is mostly a chronology of Pete Sampras’ tennis career, tournament by tournament. He spends a fair amount of time defending himself for being labeled “a boring” tennis player; and as such, writes a fairly boring book.
Monica Seles: “Getting a Grip”
This is an interesting look at her tennis life through her eyes. Monica’s story is focused around her obsessive and binge eating disorder, which saw her gain 40 pounds during her playing days.
Paul Rutherford: The Bahama Triangle:
Written by fellow Newk Camper, Paul Rutherford, this book is a fast-moving action book about a tennis pro, who gets involved with some interesting characters after leaving the tour and teaching at Atlantis Resort in the Bahamas.
What good tennis books have you read??
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