It's opening day at the ballpark, and Thumby Duckling is nervous. He hopes it won't be one, two, three strikes, he's out! Trailing by three in the bottom of the ninth, the Webbies are counting on Thumby to save the day. Can Thumby shake his jitters and show his team that he's a star player? From Peter Abrahams and Frank Morrison comes the story of one duck's quest to make it in the big leagues.
It's opening day at the ballpark, and Thumby Duckling is nervous. He hopes it won't be one, two, three strikes, he's out! Trailing by three in the bottom of the ninth, the Webbies are counting on Thumby to save the day. Can Thumby shake his jitters and show his team that he's a star player?
From Peter Abrahams and Frank Morrison comes the story of one duck's quest to make it in the big leagues.
It's Opening Day and Thumby, a Butterfinger-orange duckling, is nervous about playing with his team, the Webbies. Abrahams wastes no time, fast-forwarding to the top of the ninth. An unseen announcer offers play-by-play commentary ("Two on, two out for the Quackers. The Webbies need an out!") while onlookers contribute local color. Morrison's charismatic action paintings feature the tenacious ducklings in mid-catch, slide, and pitch. Readers will recognize Thumby by his anxious expression and thumb-sucking, but when "the little rookie from the wrong side of the marsh" swings the bat, he brings it on home. Despite the hasty pace, Morrison's striking visuals, occasional baseball tips, and lively patter dish up a quirky twist on the game. Ages 3–8. (Mar.)
- Della A. Yannuzzi
Thumby Duck is a member of the Webbies Baseball Team. It is opening day at the ballpark and Thumby is nervous. He wants to show his team he's a winner and star player. It's the top of the ninth inning with two on and two out for the Quackers. The Webbies need another out. There's a long drive to the right and Thumby catches it. But the game isn't finished. At the bottom of the ninth, it's the last chance for the Webbies. The score is 3for the Quakers and zero for the Webbies. Soon, tension builds as the Webbies get players on first and third. They can tie the game and a player makes this happen by getting to first base. The bases are now loaded, but it is Thumby's turn up. Can he bring the guys in and tie or even win the game? The pitcher winds up and throws the ball. It's a strike, and then another one. Thumby has only one more chance. The ball's flying toward him, but Thumby doesn't see it because his eyes are closed. He swings the bat and bam, the ball heads out of the ballpark. The Webbies win 4-3. Thumby proves he can be a star player. The author has written a fast-paced funny book that will appeal to young readers. The illustrations are action-filled, colorful, and cute. An unobtrusive way of citing good sportsmanship makes for a meaningful ending. Reviewer: Della A. Yannuzzi
School Library Journal
PreS-K—Thumby, the smallest duckling on the team, is starting in his first opening-day baseball game for the Webbies. The story begins at the top of the ninth, with the opposing team at bat. The artwork is stronger than the text. Morrison provides painterly renditions of the action and draws some scenes with a unique perspective to show how it feels to be a rookie at the plate waiting for the pitch or a novice fielder hoping to catch a ball to make the third out. Readers will sense Thumby's anxiety as he is often portrayed with his thumb in his mouth. Humorous batting tips are sprinkled throughout. New players will enjoy the traditional happy ending with the bons mots on the final page.—Blair Christolon, Prince William Public Library System, Manassas, VA
Peter Abrahams is the New York Times bestselling author of twenty-five books, including the Edgar Award-winning Reality Check, Bullet Point, and the Echo Falls series for middle graders. Writing as Spencer Quinn, he is also the author of the Chet and Bernie series—Dog on It, Thereby Hangs a Tail, and To Fetch a Thief. He and his wife live in Massachusetts with their dog, Audrey.