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Out in Left Field
Donald is sure that his life is ruined when a pop fly beanball knocks him senseless out in left field. The error costs his team the game, and Donald is convinced that they whole town is laughing at him. A sequel to When the Sergeant Came Marching Hone.
Hardcover, 224 pages
Published February 20th 2012 by Holiday House
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Out in Left Field, written by Don Lemna and illustrated by Matt Collins, is a realistic fiction novel that children around the junior high level would enjoy. It tells the story of Donald, an eleven year old boy in a rural Montana community. He gets hit on the forehead with a fly ball that cost his team the game against the rival school, Melody. The ball knocked him out but the embarrassment it created lasted much longer than the lump on his forehead and the black eye did. He spent all year tryin...more
In this sequel to When the Sergeant Came Marching Home (which I haven't read; it didn't affect my comprehension) set in 1947, Donald flubs catching a pop fly at the before school baseball game with a rival town, and feels that he let down the entire town. When school starts, he tries one scheme after another to redeem himself-- he saves up for an archery set, learns to drive a truck, takes up hockey, and generally tries to find something to set himself apart while enduring the taunts of his clas...more
I'm afraid I didn't like this historical fiction possible WAW nominee at all. And since it's by a Canadian author, I'm not sure why it's even on the list. But it takes place on an Oregon farm in 1947 and is about Donald who loves baseball. But when he misses a catch in the final game of the season and gets hit in the head so they lose the game, he feels he'll never live it down. Of course the school bully rubs it in and makes it hard to forget so Donald gives up baseball and tries to excel in ot...more
Out in Left Field was a good book because it kind of had multiple stories in one book. It was kind of like a diary and I liked it, but the only reason I rated it four stars was because the ending was abrupt and the transitions from one event to another were a little strange. For example,"...was the terrible longing I felt during our long lunch hour when the older boys headed for the ball field. (next chapter) One Saturday morning in November..."(Page 109-110). Even though some parts of the book...more
Part 2 to When the Sergeant Came Marching Home, Out In Left Field offers more feel-good, laugh-aloud adventures of eleven-year-old Donald growing up in post-World War II Montana. This timeout, Donald is sure that his life is ruined when a pop fly bean ball knocks him senseless out in left field. The error costs his team the game, and Donald is desperate to redeem himself. But all of his efforts end in disaster. Children will welcome the return of this appealing young hero in a hilarious new stor...more
The main character is realistic and will resonate with kids. I suspect that kids growing up in more rural areas and near or on farms will get more out of this than urban kids, but is overall a decent boy's story. Nothing spectacular, but a few smile-worthy moments and an easy read.