Late to the Ball: Age. Learn. Fight. Love. Play Tennis. Win

Scribner. May 2016. 288p. ISBN 9781476737393. $26; ebk. ISBN 9781476737430. MEMOIR
This engaging memoir is written by former New York Times Magazine editor Marzorati, who chose to up his tennis game in his 50s. Marzorati spoke to tennis coaches across the United States about their approaches to teaching and understanding the game. The book is not simply a reflection of the author's love and passion for tennis; it also serves as an exemplar of how seeking out challenges at any age can be a fundamentally sound physical and mental endeavor. Similar to William Finnegan's Barbarian Days: A Surfing Life in that Marzorati pursues a sport that decidedly does not come easier with the passing of time, and one that he will never truly master, this work ultimately speaks of empowerment even if only in small increments. As with Finnegan's book, this volume looks at how aging allows the older athlete to come to a deeper understanding of the lives they have led and continue to lead.
VERDICT This solid entry in the sports canon is comparable to John Updike's introspective musings on his golf game. Marzorati's reflections on his love for tennis and the process of mastering its subtleties makes for a delightful read sure to satisfy any tennis player.
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