Customer Reviews for

Blockade Billy

Average Rating 3.5
( 426 )
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5 Star

(89)

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(100)

2 Star

(63)

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(22)

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Most Helpful Favorable Review

20 out of 21 people found this review helpful.

Rules of Baseball

Stephen King is hearing the eyewitness account of the amazing, but short-lived baseball career of rookie, William "Blockade Billy" Blakely, as you simultaneously overhear the conversation. The gruff baseball lingo of the New Jersey Titan's third base coach, George Gran...
Stephen King is hearing the eyewitness account of the amazing, but short-lived baseball career of rookie, William "Blockade Billy" Blakely, as you simultaneously overhear the conversation. The gruff baseball lingo of the New Jersey Titan's third base coach, George Grantham, or "Granny", takes you to the games and relates the highlights of the innings that bear telling.
To anyone who has ever seen a softball or baseball team in play, courtesy of Mr. King's storytelling ability, the action unfolds and comes alive compelling you to turn the pages.
You know all along that something is not quite right with Blakely, or King would not be interested in his tale of celebrity or why the record of his stats no longer exist, but you need to complete this consuming and sometimes melancholy novella to get the answers.
This is an easy read, but one should take in this tale slowly so as to capture and visualize the full effect.

posted by GailPFL on April 28, 2010

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Most Helpful Critical Review

13 out of 18 people found this review helpful.

Not worth the money

A good story - my bad for not looking at size of file to determine it was a short story and not a book - certainly not worth $7.99.

posted by jcNC on May 24, 2010

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  • Posted April 3, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    This short novel will please Stephen King's readers especially those who cherish baseball stories.

    In the year Russia sent a satellite into orbit, New Jersey had a professional baseball team the Titans. Just before opening day, the Devil's catcher Johnny Goodkind was drunk and ran over a woman. He tried to run but was caught, which ended his sports career. His replacement Frank Faraday suffered a career ending injury during a game.

    The team calls up from the Minors Davenport Cornholers William Blakely who proves to be a first class player. He befriends pitcher Danny Dusen who is closing in on two hundred wins. "Blockade Billy" wants him to achieve the milestone. The crowd loves Billy, but one of the management workers who deals with the players begins to notice odd phenomena involving the catcher. Billy sometimes has a band-aid on his second finger's middle knuckle and that means trouble. Billy exactly parrots what Danny says even when he was not there to hear the words. By the time his team figures out what makes Billy tick, they erase his name from the baseball archives; the Titans since have become a historical footnote while the game's greatest play simply vanished as the season for the Titans does not count.

    This short novel will please Stephen King's readers especially those who cherish baseball stories. The story line feels somewhat like throwback to when baseball was the National Pastime just a decade after Jackie Robinson broke the race barrier. Well written and entertaining although the short format never allows the audience to get close to Billy or his teammates, fans will sing Take Me Out to the Ballgame, King style.

    Harriet Klausner

    7 out of 11 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted May 23, 2010

    Road Closed

    I have to admit I am biased towards Stephen Kings writings. I enjoy almost everything he writes and to me, much of it is superb. This short story, a very short story is intriguing. It gives a feel to the old days of baseball, with grittiness and grayness that one doesn't find today with all the finesse and flamboyancy. That alone helps make this story worth reading for it gives a true in-your-face look at what could have been the day to day of a major league team. The character of Blockade Billy and his interactions with the narrator, the Newark Titan's third base coach and the pitching ace who threw everyone under the bus except this young Iowa catcher whom he took under his wing, is incredible considering the short number of pages that the events develop in. There doesn't seem to be one extraneous word, nor one to few. Short, simply told, and beautiful imagery, which at the same time is gristly, the story of this young baseball prodigy and mentally unbalanced man is not so much thriller as a fictional true crime story with the reader knowing that something is coming and almost able to guess it. The plot doesn't really have any surprises but just a 'huh, so that's what he did' feel to it. Recommended to anyone who likes, King's work, baseball, mystery, or true crime. Can be read in an hour or so.

    5 out of 6 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted February 13, 2011

    more from this reviewer

    Nice Quick Read

    Stephen King - simple and pure! Loved it.

    2 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 2, 2010

    A very good story

    A story for fans of Mr. King (or rather Mr. Bachman), baseball and the novel Blaze.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 23, 2012

    Great

    Great

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 13, 2012

    Highly recommended

    An original and poignant story. The ending made me want to cry. A must read!

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  • Posted April 12, 2012

    more from this reviewer

    Justifiably King

    Smooth flowing storytelling for which King is synonymous. Must read for any King fan or someone looking for something different...

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  • Posted October 23, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    What's a human roadblock

    This will be a first Mr. King book for young readers and baseball fans both. Two short stories for all to in joy and talk about to others.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 31, 2010

    wonderful!

    I loved this book! It was fast paced and I felt like I was watching the games. Stephen King is my favorite author and he does not disappoint with the story of Blockade Billy.
    I highly recommend this story to all. Wonderfully written! It adds to my King library!

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