- Brief Synopsis:
- A surprising and moving novel of fathers and sons, forgiveness and redemption, set in the world of Major League Baseball... Whatever happened to Calico Joe? It began quietly enough with a pulled hamstring.
- Long Synopsis:
- A surprising and moving novel of fathers and sons, forgiveness and redemption, set in the world of Major League Baseball... Whatever happened to Calico Joe? It began quietly enough with a pulled hamstring. The first baseman for the Cubs AAA affiliate in Wichita went down as he rounded third and headed for home. The next day, Jim Hickman, the first baseman for the Cubs, injured his back. The team suddenly needed someone to play first, so they reached down to their AA club in Midland, Texas, and called up a twenty-one-year-old named Joe Castle. He was the hottest player in AA and creating a buzz. In the summer of 1973 Joe Castle was the boy wonder of baseball, the greatest rookie anyone had ever seen. The kid from Calico Rock, Arkansas dazzled Cub fans as he hit home run after home run, politely tipping his hat to the crowd as he shattered all rookie records. Calico Joe quickly became the idol of every baseball fan in America, including Paul Tracey, the young son of a hard-partying and hard-throwing Mets pitcher. On the day that Warren Tracey finally faced Calico Joe, Paul was in the stands, rooting for his idol but also for his Dad. Then Warren threw a fastball that would change their lives forever... In John Grisham's new novel the baseball is thrilling, but it's what happens off the field that makes CALICO JOE a classic.
- Book Quality:
- Publisher Quality
- Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group
- Date of Addition:
- Copyright Date:
- Copyrighted By:
- Belfry Holdings, Inc
- Adult content:
- Sports, Literature and Fiction
- Submitted By:
- Bookshare Staff
Reviews of Calico Joe (1 review)
Reviewer: Donald Wardlow
For once, John Grisham has written a book without a courtroom in it, and I say Thank God! I was sick to death of him writing the same book over and over. Here, he beautifully evokes early 1970s baseball, which happens to be the time I discovered baseball. Particularly in the summer and fall of 1973, the year this takes place in, I followed the Mets religiously as they thundered down the stretch to the World Series, and took 7 games to lose it to Oakland. Grisham mentions 2 of the 3 Mets' broadcasters-Lindsay Nelson and Ralph Kiner, who along with Bob Murphy are all now in the baseball Hall of Fame. Grisham even mentions the Phillies' announcer Harry Kalas, another Hall of Famer, a short plumpish man with the voice of thunder. It's my guess when I kneel in judgment, my Maker's voice will boom as did Harry Kalas' mighty pipe organ. Reading this book, I can hear "Jeremiah Was a BullFrog," coming out of the radio, and the faltering voice of my grandpa who would be lost by the end of that great and terrible year. I can also hear the much less known but equally catchy tune "Brooklyn," the last 45 I asked Grandpa to buy me. He never could manage it. Grisham evokes the pre-Internet days when a kid with a good radio in Jersey could hear ball games from Boston to Washington. The character of Warren Tracey is singularly vicious, even for an athlete. Athletes bullied me all through my teens, and in 12 years as a baseball announcer my regard for them went lower yet, if possible, but Tracey is more heartless than any player I would dare to dream up. The miracle is that his son turned out to be a decent human being, making this book worth reading.