Dad, Jackie, and Me

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It is the summer of 1947 and a highly charged baseball season is underway in New York. Jackie Robinson is the new first baseman for the Brooklyn Dodgers—and the first black player in Major League Baseball. A young boy shares the excitement of Robinson's rookie season with his deaf father.

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It is the summer of 1947 and a highly charged baseball season is underway in New York. Jackie Robinson is the new first baseman for the Brooklyn Dodgers—and the first black player in Major League Baseball. A young boy shares the excitement of Robinson's rookie season with his deaf father.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
Uhlberg's (Flying Over Brooklyn) moving text and Bootman's (Papa's Mark) realistic, period watercolors introduce the narrator, an avid young baseball player and fan of the Brooklyn Dodgers. In 1947, the Dodgers have just acquired Jackie Robinson, and the boy's father, who is deaf, comes home with two tickets to see the Dodgers play. Though the man has never shown an interest in the sport, soon after the game, the eager-to-learn man grills his son about the sport and about Robinson, and each night attempts to play catch with the boy. Though Bootman's portraits of father and son can be uneven, his close-ups of Robinson consistently convey the athlete's poise and calm under fire. The tale focuses less on the specifics of the season and more on the link between Robinson and the boy's deaf father overcoming obstacles; in many ways the concluding author's note tells the more poignant side of the autobiographical points to the story. But most readers will be thrilled by the book's climax: when Robinson catches a ball to make the last out of the season, he throws the ball to the boy's father, who, for the first time in his life, catches a baseball. Ultimately, this is an affecting tribute to Robinson, to a dedicated son and to a thoughtful, deep-feeling father. And, of course, to baseball. Ages 4-8. (Mar.) Copyright 2005 Reed Business Information.
School Library Journal
Gr 2-5-Like The Printer (Peachtree, 2003), this story is based on Uhlberg's experiences growing up as a hearing child of deaf parents. The tale is set in Brooklyn in 1947, where a young Dodger fan eagerly anticipates the much-heralded addition of Jackie Robinson to his team's lineup. Surprisingly, the narrator's deaf father is interested too; he has recognized his own struggle for respect and acceptance mirrored in Robinson's triumph. The two begin attending games and keep a scrapbook of newspaper clippings about the first baseman. Though baseball and Robinson are at the heart of this story, its strength lies in its depiction of the bond between father and son. It is evident that their relationship is characterized by respect and tenderness, though, at the ballpark, the boy is at first embarrassed when his father's awkward cheer causes other fans to stare. The page design resembles a scrapbook, with actual newspaper clippings on the endpapers. Bootman's lovely watercolor paintings add detail and wistful nostalgia. Baseball fans may be disappointed with the narrative's slow pace and the fact that Robinson is little more than an iconic figure, but others will appreciate the story's insightful treatment of deafness as viewed through the eyes of a child.-Marilyn Taniguchi, Beverly Hills Public Library, CA Copyright 2005 Reed Business Information.
Kirkus Reviews
When Jackie Robinson signs with the Brooklyn Dodgers in 1947 as first baseman, the historic event captures the imagination of one middle-aged man in Brooklyn-the author's father. This genuinely affecting, fictionalized story reveals how Uhlberg's father, who is deaf, personally relates to the first African-American player in major league baseball as someone who also has to overcome discrimination. The shared excitement of father and son during a Giants vs. Dodgers game at Ebbets Field is contagious, as readers experience the tension of the game as well as that generated by racist Giants fans. The boy's embarrassment as his father chants Jackie's name as "AH-GHEE, AH-GEE, AH-GEE!" vanishes by the season's last game when Robinson throws the ball straight to his father and, amazingly, he catches it in his bare hand. Bootman's realistic, wonderfully expressive watercolor paintings capture the fashions and flavor of 1940s New York in muted browns and greens. The endpapers, an actual scrapbook of old newspaper articles about Robinson, provide a satisfying context for this ultimately upbeat, multi-dimensional story. (author's note) (Picture book. 7-10)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781561455317
  • Publisher: Peachtree Publishers, Ltd.
  • Publication date: 2/28/2010
  • Pages: 32
  • Sales rank: 628,236
  • Age range: 6 - 9 Years
  • Product dimensions: 9.30 (w) x 10.70 (h) x 0.20 (d)

Customer Reviews

Average Rating 5
( 6 )
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Sort by: Showing all of 6 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted June 15, 2007

    Great Book to show differences in people

    Not only does this book teach racial tolerance, it teaches students about having a deaf family member. It puts it in a way that children can relate. It also focuses on baseball, so the boys in my class were really interested in the story.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 31, 2007

    A wonderful edition to any collection

    The illustrations are outstading! Children that read this book are exposed to the history of U.S. baseball, and the importance of Jackie Robinson to the sport. Readers will also be exposed to the bond that exists with a young son and his deaf father. An excellent read-aloud!

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 14, 2006

    Uhlberg Hits a Home Run

    'Dad, Jackie, and Me' is a touching story of a young boy learning about the cruelty of discrimination and the pride of those who suffer from prejudice. At first, the boy is surprised when his deaf father takes a sudden interest in baseball and Jackie Robinson in particular. But as the two of them attend games at Ebbets Field and begin a scrapbook of news clippings about Jackie, the boy understands the connection between his deaf father and the first black player in the Major Leagues. Uhlberg has a way of drawing a reader into the story and back in time to experience a little slice of life from 1947. He gives wonderful insight into the perspective of a child growing up with parents who are 'different.'

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted February 4, 2013

    more from this reviewer

    Review: ¿Dad, Jackie, and Me¿, written by Myron Uhlberg, weaves

    Review: “Dad, Jackie, and Me”, written by Myron Uhlberg, weaves the story of Jackie Robinson with the story of a young boy with a Deaf father. I love the scrapbook pages that are reproduced as part of the inside cover. The story told through the eyes of the young boy reveal his excitement for the game of baseball and the history made by Jackie Robinson.

    In the telling of the story the boy also reveals a small peek into the life of living with a Deaf father and how that impacts his life. At the end of the book there is an Author’s Note that sheds light on what parts of the story are factual.

    The illustrations capture the action of the game as well as depicting the time period of the story. A study of the illustrations make you feel like you are involved in the story itself. This would make a good read aloud story for younger children as well as a read on your own for children interested in the life of Black Americans that made an impact in American History. (rev. C.Delorge)

    Two awards have been given for this book. "Teachers' Choices" An International Rading Association Project and "Schneider Family Book Award."

    Author Myron Uhlberg is also author of the Printer which is in the ACS library, Flying Over Brooklyn, and Lemuel the Fool.
    DISCLOSURE: A complimentary review copy of Dad, Jackie, and Me was provided to us by Peachtree Publishers for the purpose of review. All opinions are solely those of the reviewer.

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  • Posted October 23, 2011

    What a touching and truly beautiful story.

    I checked this book out at the library and was brought to tears. What a beautiful story of strength. It teaches us all to be strong when faced with adversity. To focus on doing what is right and to trust that humanity will be there to support you through. I really loved it.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 3, 2012

    No text was provided for this review.

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