Wednesday, October 1, 2014

Will Nick Ever Get on the Mound Again?

Nick’s welcome home from the hospital isn’t all that warm. Then again, it's just he and his dad now, and his father hasn’t smiled in a long time. It's obvious his dad won’t be giving him any breaks, and he seems to resent the limp Nick's developed as a result of Polio, which kept him in the hospital for over a year. His father's always busy playing catcher for the local semiprofessional team, and Nick had to do all the chores around the house. After being away for so long, he knows he doesn’t have any friends left. After all, he went from being the best pitcher in town, to someone who can’t walk without limping. He’ll never be able to pitch now. When an unlikely friendship begins with the girl next door (who's obsessed with baseball), Nick has someone to talk to and maybe play some light ball games with. At the stadium things are really happening. The famous Satchel Paige has come back for another season, and Nick can’t believe his luck. Especially when he gets to meet the great player, and the owner of the team gives Nick some important jobs. Satch takes a liking to Nick and pushes him to overcome his limp and the painful brace that he has to wear. Will Nick’s dad ever show him the affection he needs? Is it possible for Nick to move around without the brace? Will Nick ever get on the mound again? What will happen when they travel to towns that aren’t happy with a team made up of both black and white players? You'll have to read this story to learn more baseball history!


King of the Mound: My Summer with Satchel Paige by Wes Tooke brought history to life for me. I didn’t know anything about Satchel Paige’s baseball career, and even though the characters in this story are made up- I still learned a lot. I really connected with Nick because he's kind and struggling with the way his life has changed. My heart went out to him, and I was glad he was able to make a good friend who helped him see the brighter side of things. I could easily picture the baseball games that were taking place, and I loved imagining the stunts Satchel Paige performed in order to get fans to come to the games. What a talented player! I was sad to see what life was like for any baseball players who weren’t white. It's terrible to think that people wouldn’t let a talented player sign for the majors- simply because of his skin color. This book helped to show that if we don’t take no for an answer there may be consequences we don’t even see! Fans of baseball will definitely enjoy this book and the interaction between Nick and Satch. For those that don't like baseball- if you like to see people working to overcome challenges, this is a story you'll really get into. This book will be enjoyed by kids in third grade and up. A reminder to us all to never give up on our dreams!

Has anyone else read King of the Mound: My Summer with Satchel Paige? Or have you read another book by Wes Tooke? If so what did you think of it? We'd love to hear your thoughts.

Happy reading!
~L

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28 comments:

  1. This sounds like a great book for baseball fans and for boys. Thanks for sharing it!

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    1. Natalie- Definitely! Baseball fans will love this book. :) ~L

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  2. Sounds like a wonderful read and it's hard to imagine in today's world and yet it wasn't that long ago.

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    1. TBM- I know! So close, yet so far away. :) ~L

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  3. Definitely one that I'm sure will entice boys to read. I know football based books are hugely popular amongst boys of a certain age here in the UK.

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    1. Tracy- I agree that a lot of boys will like this one and the great part is girls will enjoy it too :) ~L

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  4. Well, I am a big baseball fan and I hadn't heard of this one. I am definitely going to check this one out. Thanks for telling me about it.

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    1. Rosi- If you love baseball then this is right up your alley! Enjoy! :) ~L

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  5. King of the Mound sounds like a great book for boys!

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  6. I have not read this one, but it sounds like something kids would love. Sports books always lose me because I know nothing about how these games are played!

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    1. Stephanie- The great part about this book is that it is more about relationships and overcoming obstacles than the game of baseball itself. A lot of the baseball scenes involve pitching and those who don't know baseball won't be lost. :) ~L

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  7. I haven't heard about this one, but it sounds really good! A great history lesson and message in one :)

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    1. Meradeth- I definitely learned a lot about history! :) ~L

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  8. I haven't read this or any of the author's books but baseball is my favorite sport. Will have to take a look. Thanks.

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    1. Beverly- if you love baseball then this book is for you! :) ~L

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  9. I have a feeling this book would make me cry. Sounds like a heartwarming read.

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    1. Kelly- It is heartwarming. :) ~L

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  10. Baseball isn't one of my favorite sports (I played softball for two years and thought it was the most boring thing ever), but this sounds like such a touching book. Thanks for the review!

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    1. Cherie- It's a touching read and I learned a lot about a baseball great! :) ~L

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  11. Sounds like an inspiring book for sure! I love recommending books about overcoming limits and challenges to my students.

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    1. Claudine- This book is very inspirational! A great one to recommend! :) ~L

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  12. This looks very appealing for children because of all the elements mentioned. I'd like to read it myself.

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    1. Medeia- It is a book that can be enjoyed by adults and kids :) ~L

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  13. Both of Tooke's books have been very popular with my students. I can't wait to see what he writes next!

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    1. Ms. Yingling- how awesome that his books are so popular at your school! Yeah! :) ~L

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