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Are You Kidding Me?: The Story of Rocco Mediate's Extraordinary Battle with Tiger Woods at the US Open Hardcover – May 18, 2009


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Editorial Reviews

Review

PRAISE FOR AMERICA'S FAVORITE SPORTSWRITER:

"John Feinstein...has done perhaps as much for golf writing as Arnold Palmer has for golf." (Washington Monthly Ron Rappaport)

"Feinstein is the most successful sportswriter in America....He has the gift of re-creating events known to us all while infusing them with excitement, even suspense." (Wall Street Journal Jay Nordlinger)

"The best chronicler in sports journalism." (Seattle Times Craig Smith)

"John Feinstein has become sportswriting's John Grisham." (Sporting News David Kindred)

"Feinstein makes you care." (Entertainment Weekly Bruce Fetts,)

"One of the best sportswriters alive." (USA Today Larry King)

About the Author

John Feinstein is the bestselling author of Let Me Tell You a Story, Caddy for Life, Open, The Punch, The Last Amateurs, The Majors, A Good Walk Spoiled, A Civil War, A Season on the Brink, Play Ball, Hard Courts, and two novels. He writes for Inside Sports, Golf, Tennis Magazine, and Basketball America and commentates on NPR and CBS. John Feinstein lives in Potomac, MD, and Shelter Island, NY.

Rocco Mediate has been playing professional golf since 1985. He lives in Los Angeles.
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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 322 pages
  • Publisher: Little, Brown and Company; 1 edition (May 18, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0316049107
  • ISBN-13: 978-0316049108
  • Product Dimensions: 6.2 x 1.1 x 9.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 3.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (20 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,096,609 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

An interesting chronicle of the Life of Rocco leading into the duel with Tiger.
Robert Riccardi
Feinstein really breezes through the part of the book where Rocco is clearly cheating on his wife with his "Therapist" and eventually runs off with her.
Ed Bilderback
Even though he's more outgoing, less boring than many of his peers, Feinstein glosses over several items.
J Chadderdon

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

7 of 8 people found the following review helpful By PAR-TEE on July 3, 2009
Format: Hardcover
I love Rocco, I wish he won the 2008 U.S. Open, but this book is nothing more than a press release... The first half of the book does give some insight into Rocco and his life, but from there it is light in content and outright boring at times; Sorry Rocco... I wish Rocco the best in life, but must warn potential buyers to pass on this book unless you want a signed copy by Rocco or are a diehard Rocco fan like me...
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Mahlon Christensen on June 18, 2009
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I've been critical of many of John Feinstein's recent efforts, which is why I was so pleased to see that he has almost regained that mid-90's form with his latest book.

Are You Kidding Me chronicles the historic battle between Tiger Woods and Rocco Mediate for the 2008 U.S. Open Championship at Torrey Pines, already considered by many to be one of the most exciting Major Championships ever contested. The first half of the book is a Mediate Biography, but it's the second half of the book where Feinstein really shines. He takes the reader inside the ropes as only he can, describing the action in a way that will keep you on the edge of your seat, even though you already know the outcome.

I did find errors, and I felt that Feinstein glossed over Rocco's relationship with his therapist, but otherwise this is a solid effort. I also wish that he didn't feel the need to continually remind us that the majority of PGA Tour Pro's are Republicans. I, for one, like my sports books free of political statements.

Are You Kidding Me is a fast(I read it in 3 days) fun Summer read, and a must for Golf fans.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Johnson on June 20, 2009
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Having read several books by Feinstein this book delivers about the same amount of humor, seriousness and detail as one would expect. It is obvious John did a great deal of research as he quotes and uses information from many different people. If you enjoy golf books and hearing how sports stars think about playing golf and competing you will like this book. There is a good amount of quotes from various golfers regarding their life at the US Open and the trials and tribulations an athlete goes through during their life. The story about Rocco is intriguing and in many cases sad. It is great hearing about his background, how he came about playing golf, his relationship with various people close to him as well as he thought process regarding golf and life. As a point of personal conflict I was disappointed in the lack of discussion regarding his family later in the book. In the early parts of the book it was nice to read about how he was feeling and how his son's and wife were feeling as it gave perspective from both sides. However as Rocco's life changed so did the amount of information we received about his family. Maybe this was intentional due to the struggles he was experiencing but it made for a lack of perspective. All in all the book was a good read.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Ed Bilderback on April 12, 2011
Format: Hardcover
You really start off this book pulling for Rocco even though we know the outcome of the US Open. We pull for him more as a good guy, which it turns out he really isn't. Feinstein really breezes through the part of the book where Rocco is clearly cheating on his wife with his "Therapist" and eventually runs off with her. It was just kind of gross the way he did it though, almost giving him a free pass for the entire thing. Didn't really care for the book except the first half and don't care for Rocco. Walked away wishing I had never read it and feeling a little cheated. Normally love Feinstein books although he's without question become the most arrogant Duke Alumni in the country, perhaps his most impressive feat considering the competition.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Mike on September 28, 2009
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
From a golfer persepctive, this is very good read. I enjoyed it enough to buy 3 as gifts for my golfing buddies, and they enjoyed it as I did. First 2/3 is Rocco. Last 1/3 if the U.S. Open. The review that complains about Rocco's personal life is mis-placed, IMO. Even though some of the personal aspects were given short thrift, they need to be touched upon, or it wouldn't be much of a biography.

Simply put... fun read (especially for golfers)
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Robert Riccardi on March 23, 2013
Format: Kindle Edition
An interesting chronicle of the Life of Rocco leading into the duel with Tiger. The agonizing part of the whole saga, as I have read in similar accounts, is the toll that life on Tour takes on the personal and family lives. The perfect balance is hard to achieve, as witnessed by these two participants. But, that being said, call Rocco and Tiger both winners.
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Format: Hardcover
If you are a golf fan, you certainly remember the 2008 United States Open.

There Tiger Woods, limping on an injured leg, survived four regulation rounds and 19 holes of playoff golf to capture the title in the San Diego area. It might have been the greatest triumph of a career filled with them.

But it was the guy who finished second who might have gained the most.

Rocco Mediate was the runner-up, a mid-40's player known as a very good but hardly great player with perhaps his best shot at a major title. Mediate lost, but his play, his story and his good humor impressed the country.

Mediate received some offers to do books after the Open was over, and he decided the route to go was to speak with John Feinstein, a longtime writer who has several very good golf books to his credit. Feinstein usually does longer books, but he had been friendly with Mediate and obviously thought it would be fun to work with him.

The result is "Are You Kidding Me?" -- a pleasant enough read but one that never jumps to compelling.

The first half of the book is devoted to Mediate's life. He grew up in Western Pennsylvania, spent a brief amount of time in college and made it to the PGA Tour. Mediate won a few tournaments and made some money, but he wasn't quite good enough to make a Ryder Cup team or come oh-so-close to a major.

Part of the problem was a pesky back. Every serious golfer is bound to have back issues for at least a portion of his or her life, and Mediate had surgery there at one point. But a therapist gave him some help, and some minor swing changes allowed him to compete again. But that didn't make his play at Torrey Pines any less surprising.

The week of the Open gets the second half of the book.
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