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Iron Tearing Soil

James Francken: Golf, 4 October 2001

A Gentleman's Game 
by Tom Coyne.
Atlantic, 264 pp., £15, July 2001, 1 903809 05 3
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Riverbank Tweed and Roadmap Jenkins: Tales from the Caddie Yard 
by Bo Links.
Simon and Schuster, 302 pp., £15, May 2001, 0 684 87362 1
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Spikes 
by Michael Griffith.
Arcade, 258 pp., £17, February 2001, 1 55970 536 1
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... foozle. Embroidered stories and far-fetched claims play a part in the journeyman’s game. In Tom Coyne’s sharp first novel, the narrator’s down-in-the-mouth father depends on tall tales to keep in with the better players. The father, James Price, is a cautious, trustworthy accountant working in a small town in Delaware, but the lies he tells ...

Who had the most fun?

David Bromwich: The Marx Brothers, 10 May 2001

Groucho: The Life and Times of Julius Henry Marx 
by Stefan Kanfer.
Penguin, 480 pp., £7.99, April 2001, 0 14 029426 0
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The Essential Groucho 
by Groucho Marx, edited by Stefan Kanfer.
Penguin, 254 pp., £6.99, September 2000, 0 14 029425 2
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... Wake, according to Thornton Wilder, a formidable scholar of Joyce. ‘This is the three lipoleum Coyne Grouching down in the living detch.’ When told of the homage in later years, Groucho was well pleased and only a little sceptical. ‘Did a New York policeman, on his way back to Ireland to see his dear old Mother Machree, encounter Joyce in some ...

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