Good evening everyone!
With this post I am beginning to add a rating system to my reviews. They are very unscientific and definitely not given to a particular rubric used in reviews. But I thought they might be helpful for readers. The scale is a simple 1 to 5 with 1 being a bad read, 2 being an so-so read, 3 an ok read, 4 a good read, and 5 a great read.
Here are the first three books to be rated with my new system, two having to do with my favorite sport – Baseball!
The first is The Teammates: A Portrait of a Friendship by David Halberstam. With the final ride down the east coast by two of them to see their dying teammate, the legendary Ted Williams, as a backdrop, David Halberstam writes of four Red Sox legends and friends who remained that way for the rest of their lives: Ted Williams, Dominic DiMaggio, Johnny Pesky, and Bobby Doerr.
As they travel, Halberstam weaves in their individual stories as well as their stories as teammates on the Boston Red Sox of the 40’s and early 50’s, into the narrative and highlights both the before, during, and after of their lives as players and their unique personalities. Honest yet somewhat sympathetic, Halberstam, presents an interesting tale of men who played the game in a different era, under different circumstances, and yet remained committed to one another as time, and the game they loved to play, moved on.
What finally stands out to me is how one stood above the rest (Williams) and yet had great affection for the others who in turn had great affection for him.
A “good read’ book – 4.
The other baseball book is Yogi Berra’s When You Come to A Fork in the Road, Take It!
Written, in my opinion, in the fast paced and clipped style of Berra, this book is a compilation of some of Yogi’s sayings (and how he got the nickname Yogi) and what he meant by those wonderful sayings. My favorite saying in this book is, “Little League Baseball is a good thing because it keeps parents off the streets and the kids out of the house.”
One might tire of the common themes he returns to again and again – family, hard work, being grateful, and the like – but he makes his point about the value of education (he stopped at eight grade) and how he is glad that his children have earned good education. And you cannot argue with his unique insights into the personalities and game that he played in what is considered by some ‘the golden years of baseball.’
Another “good” book – a 4.
Now for a book that I read in an afternoon and whose story line and characters just gripped me from the beginning and it is not a fiction story. It is a true story from the pen, and life of well known science writer David Dobbs.
Entitled, My Mother’s Lover, this e-book that I purchased via the Atavist’s iPad app, is about the unexpected and bittersweet story he discovers, after his mother, reveals a name in her final days, that Dobbs and his family had never heard before. A man’s name.
I am not going to reveal anything else about the story except that it grabbed me from the start and I was caught up in Dobbs’ search for the truth about his mother and another man in a distant time.
A “great read.” A 5
Here is the Amazon Kindle link for this book:
and here are some of Dobbs’ remarks at wired.com about the book and its composition: