Five For Friday: Summer Reading

PhotobucketIn what I call an act of defiance against the 20 people on my Facebook news feed that seem to be obsessed with this Christian Grey fellow, I bought my first actual e-book today (left, or above if you’re on mobile). Yes, I am one of three baseball fans left on the planet who hasn’t actually read Moneyball. I loved the movie, but I never feel right until I’ve read the book too.

Since we’re looking at a significantly quieter summer (so far my only plans are three days of camping on Prince Edward Island in two weeks and a you-freaking-know-it-will-be-epic Springsteen concert in August) I hope to get a lot more reading done. And yes, I say this every summer and it never seems to happen. BUT THIS TIME FER SURE!

So here’s five books I have on my baseball reading bucket list. Some are recent, some not so much, but all deserve a look:

1) The Captain: The Journey of Derek Jeter by Ian O’Connor

This might be a library pickup based on this review from the New York Times, and that’s based solely on this passage describing a moment when the Yankees clinched the division in 2009: “The photos captured a beaming Jeter lifting A-Rod’s cap off his head with his left hand and pouring a bottle of bubbly over A-Rod’s bowed scalp with his right. At last, the captain had baptized Rodriguez.” Ugh. But it’s hard for me not to be curious about this bio on my beloved Captain, even if most of it likely focuses on what a nice guy he is and glosses over his flaws. And I’m sure he has at least one.

2) Pinstripe Empire: The New York Yankees From Before the Babe to After the Boss by Marty Appel

Why, yes, there’s another Yankee-centric tome on my list. I actually don’t have a definitive history of my team in my library, and this looks to be just what I need.

Photobucket3) The Machine by Joe Posnanski

This has been on my list for quite a long time, simply because of a certain Lady’s connection to this project. I really love Joe’s writing: I don’t get to his blog often, but when I do, it’s an enjoyable experience. I wouldn’t be this interested in a period of baseball that essentially took place when I was a toddler (and wasn’t completely Yankee-related) if JoePo wasn’t at the keyboard spinning the tale.

4) The Extra 2% by Jonah Keri

Another great writer, another book about the business of baseball, even if it is about the hated (by me, anyway) Rays. Keri is also writing a definitive history of the Montreal Expos, which I am ridiculously excited about and I’m sure it will be snapped up quickly in my neck of the woods when it’s released in a few years. Hurry up, Jonah!

5) The Art of Fielding by Chad Harbach

So this one is actually a work of fiction, but it’s been recommended to me by a few people (Games Mistress, were you one of those people? You know how bad my memory is.) And it involved a guy who plays shortstop, so obviously my interest is piqued. But why wouldn’t it, because his novel has everything. Career angst! Ill-fated marriages! Affairs! Gay roommates!  It’s well-written and has been recommended to me by people who would never read Fifty Shades of Grey. Obviously I’m sold!

So what are you reading this summer? Maybe your wish list has nothing to do with baseball and instead you’re getting your ideas from this flowchart. And in that case, awesome, because that’s some good reading, too!

3 thoughts on “Five For Friday: Summer Reading

  1. Nope, wasn’t me, although I’ve heard good things about it even from my non-sports literary people. I should add that one to my library request list, too. Along with Moneyball, because I’m apparently the 2nd of those three baseball fans that hasn’t read it yet.

  2. Man, I can’t find the link now, but I recently read a really good thing on Chad Harbach – he’s from just south of Milwaukee, so every few months we get another article about him and the writing of a baseball book with a gay character and how he struggled, etc, etc…. I’ll keep searching for the article – but yeah, that books on my list, too.

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