Luke Goes to Bat



Book: Luke Goes to Bat

Author and Illustrator: Rachel Isadora

Publisher: Putnam Juvenile, 2005)

ISBN-13: 978-0399236044

ISBN-10: 039924669X

Language level: 1

(1=nothing objectionable; 2=common euphemisms and/or childish slang terms; 3=some cursing and/or profanity; 4=a lot of cursing and/or profanity; 5=obscenity and/or vulgarity)

Recommended reading level: Ages 4 – 8

Rating: ***** 5 stars (EXCELLENT)

Reviewed by Wayne S. Walker

Disclosure:  Many publishers and/or authors provide free copies of their books in exchange for an honest review without requiring a positive opinion.  Any books donated to Home School Book Review for review purposes are in turn donated to a library.  No other compensation has been received for the reviews posted on Home School Book Review.

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Isadora, RachelLuke Goes to Bat (published in 2005 by G. P. Putnam’s Sons, a division of Penguin Young Readers Group, 345 Hudson St., New York City, NY  10014).  It is the summer of 1951 and young Luke lives on Bedford Ave. in Brooklyn with his Grandma and older brother Nicky.  All the boys play baseball on the street—except Luke.  He’s too young.  The others call him “a squirt.”  Every night when the Dodgers are playing at home, Luke goes up to the roof where he can see the lights of Ebbets Field and imagine each play in the game.  His hero is Jackie Robinson.  One day, another boy can’t play, so Luke is asked to join the game, but he is put out in left field where no balls are ever hit and only strikes out–twice. The boys say that he stinks.

However, Grandma takes him to see Robinson in a real game.  What will Jackie do?  Are there any lessons that Luke can learn from watching the game?  And will Luke ever be able to play baseball again? Author and illustrator Rachel Isadora provides a cute story that offers up a touching salute to 1950s Brooklyn, baseball, and one of the most inspiring players ever to take the field.  Grandma reminds Luke that “Not everyone plays like Jackie Robinson all the time. Not even Jackie Robinson.”  And Luke discovers that part of being a hero is never giving up, even when there are two strikes against you.  A good choice, especially for young baseball fans.

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