Sunday, June 21, 2009

Play ball! Children's books about baseball

Looking through my ominous to-be-reviewed pile, I see that two of them are about baseball (well, in the case of the first, about sports generally).  So I'm offering these two reviews together.  

Swing! (Hardcover), by Rufus Butler Seder. A follow-up to the very popular "Gallop!," "Swing!" uses the same style of "Scanimation" to create a sense of movement within the pages of the book as they're turned. This time, the focus is on sports (baseball, basketball, soccer, etc.) and other physical activities (cartwheels, biking, swim, etc.). Chances are if you loved Gallop!, you'll love Swing! just as much.


"Can you shoot a basketball?/ dribble! jump! swoop! / Can you swim across a pool? / splish! splash! floop!"

Bookworm's interest at 19 months: He enjoyed this about equally with the Gallop! book. He is interested in the pages and the text (he spins around when the dancer does), but he doesn't take much notice of the "scanimation" feature. Perhaps he's just too young to notice.

I must have dreamed that I posted about Change-up: Baseball Poems, which I was lucky enough to win from The Miss Rumphius Effect in April. 

Change-up: Baseball Poems (Hardcover), by Gene Fehler. Change-up is a fun book full of playful poems about baseball. The recommended age range is 4-8. What a great book for a young baseball fan. The poems capture the thrill of the game from the perspective of young players (in fact, one poem is titled "Perspective": "When I'm in the field, the open spaces are as big as the Sahara, with room enough for a thousand humpbacked camels.") Baseball fans will relate to the variety of sport-related scenarios, from the sound of a baseball accidentally hitting a window or laying awake counting bases to game superstitions and views from the bench. The charming illustrations of wide-eyed players and baseball games in progress complement the text beautifully.


(From "Superstititions") "Well, I'm not superstitious. Not me. No, not a bit. But now I'd better kiss my bat: it's almost time to hit."

Bookworm's interest at 19 months: I don't think I tried this with him, figuring he's too young.

Question: What other books about baseball and sports would you recommend?  


thekoolaidmom said...

I love the name and concept of your blog :-) It's going to be fun watching the bookworm grow, and see how his interests in books develop and change :-)

Rebecca said...

My son LOVES baseball (and sports)I really want to get these for him now! thanks

caribookscoops said...

I know my sister and her boys loved Gallop and I can't remember if she has read Swing, but I am sure if they did they would love this book and they are huge baseball fans in there house. My daughter not so much, but we just recently purchased her first bat and ball. I am not to familiar with baseball books, but I did read Baseball Saved Us by Ken Mochikuzi about baseball in the Japanese Internment camps and I enjoyed that a lot.