Like a lot of books, Josh Karp’s Straight Down the Middle: Shivas Irons, Bagger Vance, and How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love My Golf Swing began as a magazine article.

It grew into a book when Karp began to see how many people were prepared to help him reach enlightenment by swinging a golf club. He decided to visit a number of them, play golf with them, see if his game improved, and then write about the journey.

This is not to suggest that reading Straight Down the Middle will improve your golf game. Even Josh Karp acknowledges that if that’s your aim, your best bet is to find one teaching pro with whom you’re comfortable and follow her or his advice.

On the other hand, golfers unfortunate enough to live in places where there is winter or rain can’t be on the course or the driving range all the time. They might as well read about “kicking some ass in the name of Buddha” and “becoming abstract” somewhere between the tee and the green.