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The Kid from Tomkinsville (Brooklyn Dodgers #1)

3.96  ·  Rating Details ·  220 Ratings  ·  28 Reviews
Shortly before a serious accident ends his dream of pitching, Roy Tucker is called up from a small-town team in Connecticut to help the Brooklyn Dodgers out of a slump.

Includes an introduction by Bruce Brooks.
Paperback, 300 pages
Published March 1st 2006 by HMH Books for Young Readers (first published 1940)
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Moneyball by Michael LewisBall Four by Jim BoutonThe Boys of Summer by Roger KahnShoeless Joe by W.P. KinsellaThe Natural by Bernard Malamud
Best Baseball Books
93rd out of 473 books — 518 voters
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I've Read It More Than 5 Times
211th out of 730 books — 422 voters

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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 408)
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Joel Simon
Nov 15, 2009 Joel Simon rated it it was amazing
Recommended to Joel by: Dad
Shelves: children
I read this book about 15 years ago when my father-in-law recommended it to me. I really enjoyed it but I had forgotten about it until he recommended it again, this time to my 12 year old daughter. This book was written when he was about the same age as my daughter and became very popular at the time, and is the first in a series of sports books written by John R. Tunis. But it is much more than a sports book. The Kid from Tompkinsville draws on the experiences of real athletes but is otherwise ...more
Steven Peterson
I'm recapturing images and impressions, from having read this book many years ago. John Tunis was an old school author of, in this instance, baseball fiction. His vision of the good baseball player was someone who worked hard, did not showboat, worked as a good teammate. . . . The feature character is Roy Tucker, a pitcher at the outset of his career, but--after an injury to his pitching arm--he tried the outfield. The book focuses on his rather aloof character, not always the best teammate. How ...more
Oct 21, 2014 Pete rated it really liked it
like medically corny and predictable but also satisfying. this is a YA novel about a kid, from tomkinsville, who gets picked up by the brooklyn dodgers as a minor leaguer, wows everyone with his electric stuff in training camp, and then becomes a phenomenon in the bigs. sort of like the natural, but boiled down to a single season instead of a career, and also without any of the sex or most of the evil. i would say this is for basic tweens if it wasn't 100% riveting. i feel happier about living i ...more
Patricia Johnson
Jul 31, 2014 Patricia Johnson rated it did not like it
I'm afraid that I just wasn't into this book. It was written by a sports writer (John R. Tunis) as the first book in a series of children's sports books. The story was OK - a young rookie goes to try outs, makes the team and proves he is a great pitcher. Because of injuries he is put in right field and proves that he is an excellent fielder and hitter as well. As a BIG fan of baseball I was looking for a bit more plot. The theme was pretty predictible. I just couldn't get into the writer's writi ...more
Feb 03, 2014 Mary rated it liked it
I like to read at least one or two baseball books in the Summer. I read The Art of Fielding earlier in the year, but I thought I'd pick up another quick one. Set in the 1940s, the story describes the journey of Roy Tucker, a young kid from Connecticut who gets drafted by the Brooklyn Dodgers as a pitcher. He excels as a pitcher but then suffers a freak accident and cracks his pitching elbow. He works to come back to baseball as an outfielder. I enjoyed this book a lot, and I think my sons will t ...more
Laura Verret
Dec 27, 2012 Laura Verret rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: children-s-books
Roy Tucker isn’t a pro. Yet here he is at the Brooklyn Dodgers’ spring training camp, being trained to join the ranks of their pitchers. He would have never dreamed that the workouts would be so intense, the pitching sessions so straining, the pressures so exhausting… Yet, if he can just hold out, he’ll have the chance to play in the Majors!

Will Roy falter under the strain of the professional athlete’s life? Or will he bring the Dodgers to victory?


The Kid From Tomkinsville is a sports
The Sports Book Analyst
One rookie pitcher…one veteran catcher…one epic read!

When you read a lot of sports books, you might realize that there are authors and then there are artists who know the depths of raw human emotion and shows it to the reader via the written page. John R. Tunis is both.

The story starts out with Roy Tucker, a rookie pitcher, boarding a train to try out for a spot with the Dodgers. He made it through training camp, but problems for The Kid from Tomkinsville were just beginning.

After sitting on th
Bob Redmond
The Kid from Tomkinsville, in Tunis' crisply-written novel from 1940, is Roy Tucker, a pitching prodigy who gets a shot in the big leagues with the Brooklyn Dodgers. He succeeds, only to get injured in a freak accident. Spending the winter practicing hitting, Tucker switches to right field and helps the Dodgers make the postseason.

But it's no fairytale, this story. The Kid injures himself yet again, and as the book ends he is being carried off on a stretcher, possibly ruined for life.

Tunis write
Jan 31, 2013 Steve rated it really liked it
Roy Tucker, the “Kid” of the title, is recruited from his hometown baseball field to join the Brooklyn Dodgers during spring training. The young southpaw hurler isn’t quite sure what he’s getting into, having never before been out of his Connecticut home town. The story, published in 1940, rings true for its time. Once in camp and feeling the pressure of its quality and the rigor demanded of its training, quiet, humble, talented rookie Tucker struggles a bit. Thankfully, he’s taken under the win ...more
Joshua Harms
Mar 19, 2014 Joshua Harms rated it liked it
Set in the 1930s, The Kid is quaintly nostalgic of an old America—where rail travel was common, well-dressed men called waitresses pet names like “Sweet-meat,” and baseball was still America’s favorite sport. I enjoyed its throwback feel. I also liked its simplicity -- this is just good ol', no-nonsense baseball. I was left wishing I had spent more time (any time, really) as a kid memorizing names and statistics of ballplayers. Readers who would enjoy this novel are those who 1) already have a f ...more
May 25, 2015 Bryan rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: sports, fiction, baseball, 40s
Discovered Tunis in high school, reading both this and World Series. I can't recall now if they were written for kids or adults, but what has stayed with me for 25 years is that they are the best baseball works I have ever read. Beautiful stories, and a must for any serious fan of our national pastime.
Sep 11, 2016 Astrack rated it really liked it
Read this book 60 years ago when in high school. Retread recently and thoroughly enjoyed it once again. Will read other books in the series. Well written and as a big baseball fan like the messages the story chronicles.
Mar 10, 2016 Teri-k rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
My son loved these books when he was younger, but I've never read any of them. They were written for adults but became popular with young men over the years, especially sports-minded ones. So now, years later, I decided to give one a try - and I'm sorry I waited so long. Tunis tells a wonderful story about people you can really care about.Roy Tucker and Dave Leonard are men I know, or would like to.

It probably helps to know something about baseball when you read this because there are several in
Oct 08, 2015 niuzzolino rated it really liked it
It was good for a baseball fan.
Dec 01, 2008 Ryan rated it liked it
This whole book series got me interested in reading again when I was younger. I was lost in reading and this series was pointed out to me. I love the combination of characters and facts about baseball. Every young boy, who likes sports, should read this series.
Jun 24, 2012 Brian marked it as to-read
Apr 12, 2008 Bcpl rated it really liked it
I was reminded of this book while reading American Pastoral. I didn't realize that this was actually an "old" book when I read it as a kid, probably because there is so much kid historical fiction set amidst the Brooklyn Dodgers.
Apr 07, 2010 §-- rated it liked it
Shelves: childhood
Pretty sure I recall reading and loving this as an 8-year old. It was also awesome to find Tunis namechecked in Philip Roth's American Pastoral, which brought back a lot of memories for me.
Anne Bogel
May 21, 2013 Anne Bogel rated it really liked it
A classic sports novel. It's marketed as kid lit but Tunis didn't intend it as such. The first in a series, so if you like this one you've got a lot of reading to look forward to.
Jim Blessing
Jul 28, 2013 Jim Blessing rated it it was ok
Shelves: baseball
I first read this book when I was nine years old (53 years ago). The story and the characters all came back when I read it again.
May 10, 2012 Scott rated it really liked it
One of the favorite young adult sport's books as a kid. Rereading it to Danny right now. It could almost make me a Dodger fan.
George King
Apr 02, 2012 George King rated it really liked it
I read all the Tunis books featuring Roy Tucker when I was young--great sports fiction for juvenile readers.
Dec 19, 2008 Tom added it
A nostalgia trip. I read lots of Tunis as a kid. His stuff holds up well to adult rereading.
Joseph Pasqua
Great Book
It shows that you need heart to make it
If you like sports than this is a must read
Apr 02, 2013 Gary rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
This book had a great ending.
It was getting to it that was the problem.
Ray Charbonneau
Jul 30, 2009 Ray Charbonneau rated it liked it
A relic of a day long gone by.
Jun 25, 2008 Naoko added it
I read these too
Snail in Danger (Sid) Nicolaides
Dates approximate.
BookDB marked it as to-read
Sep 22, 2016
Raevyn marked it as to-read
Sep 19, 2016
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