Thursday, 5 September 2013

The Pitcher By William Hazelgrove - Released & Reviewed

William Hazelgrove's The Pitcher has been released. This Junior Library Guild Selection for Fall tells the story of a Mexican-American boy with a golden arm and a broken down World Series pitcher who coaches him for high school. The Pitcher received a rave review from Kirkus.

Find out more about William Hazelgrove:

A Best Book of the Year Selection, The Pitcher is a feel-good baseball story about a mother who won't give up on her son's dream, and an old pitcher looking for a reason to go on. Garnering five star reviews on Amazon, the best of these is an amazing testament to the book:


A boy with a golden arm but no money for lessons. A mother who wants to give her son his dream before she dies. A broken down World Series pitcher who cannot go on after the death of his wife. These are the elements of The Pitcher. A story of a man at the end of his dream and a boy whose dream is to make his high school baseball team. In the tradition of The Natural and The Field of Dreams, this is a mythic story about how a man and a boy meet in the crossroads of their life and find a way to go on. You will laugh and you will cry as The Pitcher and Ricky prepare for the ultimate try out of life.

My Review:

First can I say I know nothing about baseball. I have watched one live game when I visited Yankee stadium ten years ago. That said, I could not stop reading this book. I loved everything about it.
"I have never known a pitcher except for the guy across the street who lives in his garage. When my friends come over, we lie on his driveway listening to ballgames like the ocean in the dark." After reading this I just knew this story was going to be special. Hazelgrove did not dissapoint. The Pitcher is written from Rikki's POV in a matter of fact manner which I liked. Even when things were tough you didn't feel sorry for him. The Pitcher's character aka Jack Langford, had me chuckling often. He was tough and grumpy but oh so likeable. Maria's character (Rikki's mum) was written similar to Rikki's with a no nonsense, that's just how it is attitude. Her unwavering desire to see her son succeed is powerful.
I said at the beginning I know nothing about baseball. But I do know about strength, passion, determination, resilience, power, motivation and love. This book has all these things plus more. If you don't read The Pitcher then, strike, you're out!

Buy The Pitcher:
Amazon US, Amazon Canada, Barnes & Noble, IndieBound

More about The Pitcher and William Hazelgrove:The Pitcher...Junior Library Guild Selection
NPR Interview with Robert Siegel in Hemingways Attic
Read the Pitcher

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