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Queen of the Diamond: The Lizzie Murphy Story

4.07  ·  Rating details ·  347 ratings  ·  84 reviews
Lizzie Murphy was good at baseball. In fact, she was better than most of the boys. But she was born in 1900, and back then baseball was not a game for girls. Lizzie practiced with her brother anyway, and then she talked her way onto the local boys’ team, first as a batboy, then as a player. Everyone was impressed by her hard catches and fast pitches. By the time she turned ...more
Hardcover, 32 pages
Published February 17th 2015 by Farrar, Straus and Giroux (BYR)
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Average rating 4.07  · 
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Steve Holden
Mar 30, 2017 rated it really liked it
This is a picture book, age appropriate story of Lizzie Murphy. In preparing for a weeklong baseball themed literacy unit, the story of how women influenced the game is essential. It's easy to find appropriate books about the legends of MLB, but more difficult to find suitable accounts of the many women who've played a vital role. This one includes fictionalized, very softened, all-encouraging dialogue, but does tell a true story of a courageous, strong, and extremely talented young woman who kn ...more
The story of Lizzie Murphy, the first female professional baseball player. If I didn't already know the story, I probably would have found this more interesting. I do think athletic girls will be inspired by Lizzie's story. I only learned about her recently despite growing up in a town near Lizzie's. The writing style is simple enough for young children to read and enjoy this biography. It mixes facts with dialogue to tell the story in a more engaging way. The illustrations are pretty good. The ...more
Amanda Kolb
Title: Queen of the Diamond: The Lizzie Murphy Story
Author: Emily Arnold McCully
Genre: Biography (grades k-2)
Theme(s): baseball, life history, gender stereotypes, dedication
Opening line/sentence: In 1900, baseball was America’s national pastime.
Brief Book Summary: This book is about Lizzie Murphy, one of the first women to play baseball professionally. It talks about how she used to play with her brother, but wanted to play on a team which her mother did not want her to do. Eventu
Even when she was very young, Lizzie Murphy was good at baseball, a talent her father nurtured. But the local boys wouldn't let her play with them until she had something they needed--the ball--in order to play. After she proves herself on the playing field, they never question her ability again. Eventually, she ends up playing professional baseball for seventeen years, the first person to be named to the all-star teams for both the National and American leagues. Her story is inspiring, partly b ...more
Penny Peck
Mar 18, 2015 rated it really liked it
Shelves: children-ya
Professional baseball player Lizzie Murphy is celebrated in this fictionalized picture book. Young Lizzie is shown playing ball with her brothers and encouraged by her father - there is made-up dialogue but overall it is relatively factual. Later, Lizzie works in a mill, but is offered the chance to be a paid baseball player, which she did from 1918-1935. The back page has a photo of Murphy and more information. A great book for Women's History Month and to encourage girls to play sports.
Sep 22, 2017 rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: MO school kids
Recommended to Relyn by: Show Me Nominee
I just read this book to all my second, third, and fourth grade classes. Fourth graders LOVED it. Third graders liked it a lot. Most Second graders got a little bored. I think it's a bit sophisticated for most seven year olds. Personally, I loved it.

Library Lessons
We had amazing discussions in the upper grades about equality, women's rights, and how we don't get mad about history. Instead, we work to change what we don't think is right.
I love learning about women trailblazers!
Feb 25, 2015 rated it really liked it
A surprising picture book biography about professional ballplayer Lizzie Murphy, who played from 1918 - 1935. Her father and brother were talented at baseball, and she was just as good as they were. They encouraged her playing. Her mother tried to discourage her playing sports. But Lizzie just had to -- it was the thing she did best.

When neighborhood boys wouldn't let her on their team, she agreed to be the ball-boy. One day, when none of the boys remembered to bring a ball to a game, she offer
Apr 27, 2015 rated it really liked it
A determined girl becomes a determined professional baseball player! Lizzie Murphy, raised in Rhode Island, throws and hits as well as any boy. Despite her families concerns and worries, she joins the Providence Independents and the Boston All-Stars. She fights for equal pay and earns the respect of her teammates and fans with her ability to hit and throw.

Clearly and well told, this story shares the spirit of baseball without being preachy. The language is simple and the examples are clear. A gr
Lindsey Opritza
Oct 11, 2016 rated it really liked it
Queen of the Diamond: The Lizie Murphy Story was a very encouraging story. It was based on how Lizzie wanted to play baseball but back in the 1900's it wasn't for girls. Although it was more of a boys sport she did not let that stop her. I feel this book would be great to have within a classroom for little girls just because it can teach them that they can do anything that a boy can do! It is empowering and is uplifting because Lizze went out and proved everyone wrong! The writing and pictures w ...more
Mariah Eshelman
Lizzie Murphy was determined to play baseball. Even though the boys laughed at first, she still wanted to. When they realized how good she was, she became more involved. Lizzie's mom tried to keep her from playing, but it was her dream. Lizzie went on to be the first professional baseball player. She was compared to the men and was shorted money, but after that she made sure she would never be shorted money again. People were coming to see her so she deserved it. This book is great for kids to l ...more
May 04, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Baseball Spring Training has started and we couldn't be more excited. We are a baseball loving family and can't wait to spend time watching our favorite team. Queen of the Diamond is the story of a girl with a natural athletic ability and a true love for baseball and she doesn't let anyone stand in her way. This book isn't just for baseball lovers. It's a book that will inspire you to go out and fight for what you love. ❤️⚾️ #kidsbooksworthreading #kidsbooks #kidsbookstagram #childrensliterature ...more
Apr 20, 2015 rated it really liked it
Fun story about a GIRL baseball player! Baseball player picture book bios are nothing new, and many are quite well done. But there are precious few about girl players. Note the back matter which gives a bit more info on Lizzie Murphy. I thought McCully told the story well, and kids will appreciate the attention given to Murphy's childhood love of baseball in addition to the info on her actual career.
A picture book biography of Lizzie Murphy, the first woman to play on both Major League and All-Star baseball teams in 1918-1935. McCully does a good job showing how Lizzie loved the game, believed in her passion when even her own mother discouraged her, demanded equal pay and got it! This is a good baseball story that reveals much about the attitude towards sports and women in the early 20th century.
Sandy Brehl
The fact that Lizzie Murphy loved baseball isn't such a surprise. What she managed to accomplish with her love hard work, skills, and determination are much more so. During her era it was far from the norm for a woman to support herself with a career. The story of how she managed to play professionally, generate a merchandising campaign, and sustain a career in the all-male world of sports is both inspiring and entertaining.
May 14, 2016 rated it really liked it
Lizzie Murphy was the first woman to play professional baseball. An amazing story. I especially loved how her brother and father helped her and stood up for her. And how she advocated herself, first becoming a ball girl, later demanding equal pay as the male players on the team. An inspiration.
Feb 08, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: read-in-2017
An inspirational book about the fact that we can be anything we want to be. Many kids and adults don't know about the first woman to play on both major league all-star teams!
Cassandra Clyde
Dec 31, 2019 rated it really liked it
Working with preschoolers and their families, I am frequently encouraging participation in the 1000 books before kindergarten literacy program. After years of encouraging others to participate, I decided to participate as well, despite not having a child under five years of age, and lead by example. In choosing to participate, I decided to use the challenge as a way to become more familiar with the contemporary literary cannon for families with young children, and have begun to immerse myself in ...more
Sep 18, 2018 rated it really liked it
Picked this one up at the local library while I was waiting for my son. The story is typical of any diamond-in-the-rough sports story - kid works hard, and some people believe (s)he can make it, but it takes special circumstances to finally get a chance. That's what Lizzie Murphy lived through. Overall, it's a pretty cool story.

The story brought to light a few things:
- Lizzie Murphy was not paid for her first pro game, but realized that she was the one bringing all the crowds and insisted to be
Viviane Elbee
This is a longer non-fiction picture book so it's written for elementary school students and older preschoolers who can sit through longer books.

I liked the watercolor and ink illustrations in this book - they definitely have a "historic" feel to them, all while being colorful and expressive.

My kids liked hearing about a girl baseball player. We also found ourselves rooting for Lizzy throughout the book. She definitely had to fight her way to be accepted on the field!

This story will appeal to h
Dec 26, 2019 rated it liked it
Shelves: sports
This tells the story of Lizzie Murphy from childhood to just after she started playing semi-pro ball. The rest of her career is mentioned in a sentence or two at the end, and then there's more in the back matter. In particular, playing on both major league all-star teams is only mentioned on the cover and in the back matter, not in the main text itself.

The book did a good job of showing a mix of support and opposition that Murphy faced.
Myka Shetler
Nov 28, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: childrens-lit-18
Genre: Biography
Grade Level: 2-6
I really, really liked this book. It is a story of a young girl who wants to live her dream, and a lot of people are against her. Her father and brother seem to be the only ones who encouraged her. It shows that if you truly follow and believe in your dreams you can make it happen.
Maria Caplin
May 11, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I love baseball and never heard of Lizzie Murphy. A young girl who found her voice and proved to the national league she deserved the right to play and be paid the same as any other player. The year 1918. Perseverance and determination mentor text.
Jun 30, 2017 rated it really liked it
Good inspirational book about the first female baseball player.
Sep 18, 2017 rated it really liked it
Another girl who wouldn't take no for an answer, and followed her dream to play professional baseball.
Debra Cook
Oct 22, 2017 rated it really liked it
Never knew about this
Apr 14, 2019 rated it really liked it
While I’m not a baseball fan, I am a fan of good baseball stories. Enjoyed learning about Lizzie Murphy. Love learning about some of the lesser known hero’s in history.
Apr 19, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I had never heard of Lizzie Murphy before this book - she sounds fascinating!
Kayla Benefiel
Oct 11, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Very good, biography about the first woman to play in the major league.
Mar 17, 2017 rated it really liked it
This is a non-fiction story of Lizzie Murphy the first woman to play on baseball teams.She even played with the major lead all star team. She had to practice and work to earn money like the men did but the fans came to see her play. This was a big deal in the early 1900s and is not part of the baseball leagues today.
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Emily Arnold McCully received the Caldecott Medal for Mirette on the High Wire. The illustrator of more than 40 books for young readers, she divides her time between Chatham, New York, and New York City.

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