Book Review: Calico Joe


" escape was on the field. Baseball was my best friend, and in mid-July 1973 the game was about to be electrified like never before."

In the summer of 1973, Paul Tracey's world was ruled by two men for two very different reasons.

Joe Castle, a rookie, takes the Chicago Cubs and the baseball world by storm.  "Calico Joe" is instantly placed on a pedestal by Paul, who is not alone in hoisting him up there. Joe was a present day baseball legend, shattering records and setting new, almost unreachable standards.

Warren Tracey, Paul's father, is a hot-headed, streaky pitcher for the New York Mets. He believes in superstitions and in the unwritten rules that all batters and pitchers are to follow and to never question.    

It is these two men and this game that shapes, defines and forever changes Paul.

In Calico Joe,  John Grisham takes the reader on a journey bouncing between eleven-year old Paul Tracey and present day Paul Tracey.  He reminds us that growing up has little to do with age and more with making a decision, regardless of how hard it proves to be. Though many may place John Grisham in a one-dimensional box, this book proves his storytelling ability can step outside of the courtroom.  Even if you don't consider yourself a fan of America's favorite pastime, don't count this book out.  

Calico Joe is an easy read that offers more to the reader than just baseball.  It is a story of love (for the game), forgiveness and redemption.  It conveys the perfect balance of heartbreak and hope that the Cubs fan base experiences every season. It was a book that I hated to put down and one I could not wait to get back to. 

With Opening Day right around the corner, Calico Joe would be a fitting and appropriate to bring in the season!

(I was provided a galley copy of this book; all thoughts and opinions are my own) 

4 i love your comments!:

Katie said...

I've been looking forward to this book for months! Can't wait to read it. Oh, and I'm a new follower! :)

Karen M. Peterson said...

I got to review the book too. Like you, I couldn't put it down!

a boy a girl and a pug said...

love a john grisham read...will have to check this one out. thanks for the sweet comment on boy too :-)

Tony said...

Nice Review! I generally don't read Grisham's legal thrillers but when he steps outside of that genre I love him. (e.g. Playing for Pizza)

Calico Joe was really enjoyable. I love how he didn't write Warren's complete redemption; he just gave him a sliver of redemption.

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