Sunday, November 13, 2011

Ground Ball to Short…

The Art of Fielding makes all the plays

Why would a 500-page first-novel about a baseball team at a small college in Wisconsin get over-the-top rave reviews? Why would one of my daughters who’s no big sports fan have read it, saying she hated to have her train from Brooklyn get to its Manhattan stop when she was in the last chapters? Why did my West Village bookseller almost hand it to me? Why did a guy I didn’t know in that store two weeks later when I was looking for my next book point out the The Art of Fielding to me? I don’t know why it’s all that to them.

But the team in the Midwest is nicknamed the Harpooners and the college has a statue of Herman Melville on the grounds. And they’ve got a shortstop named Henry that you’ll remember the rest of your life.

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