Silent Star: The Story of Deaf Major Leaguer William Hoy

Silent Star: The Story of Deaf Major Leaguer William Hoy

by Bill Wise, Adam Gustavson
     
 

William Hoy loved baseball. Growing up in the 1860s and '70s, he dreamed of one day playing in the major leagues. A far-off fantasy for many boys, fulfilling this dream was even more of a long shot for William, who was deaf.

Striving to find his place in a hearing world, Hoy became a shoemaker. He took pride in his work, but baseball was still his real love. When

Overview

William Hoy loved baseball. Growing up in the 1860s and '70s, he dreamed of one day playing in the major leagues. A far-off fantasy for many boys, fulfilling this dream was even more of a long shot for William, who was deaf.

Striving to find his place in a hearing world, Hoy became a shoemaker. He took pride in his work, but baseball was still his real love. When an amateur team coach saw him playing behind the shoemaker’s shop, Hoy dazzled the coach with his hard-hitting skills. Moving from amateur clubs to the minor leagues and eventually to the majors, Hoy proved himself again and again—overcoming obstacles and becoming a star both on and off the baseball diamond.

Silent Star: The Story of Deaf Major Leaguer William Hoy is a tribute to one of the most inspirational figures in baseball history. A talented player with a standout record, Hoy is a shining example that success in life should not be measured by differences but by drive and determination.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
In this rousing picture-book biography of William Ellsworth Hoy (1862–1961), one of the first deaf players in major league baseball, Wise follows Hoy from his childhood in Houcktown, Ohio (he was left deaf at age three after a meningitis infection), through his chance discovery by an amateur league coach and his ascent into the minor leagues and beyond. Wise outlines the hardships and prejudices Hoy encountered at every turn (“ost people thought he would fail. They believed big league baseball was no place for a man who could not hear or talk”), but Hoy’s determination cuts through all the doubt he faced, and some of the records he set stand to this day. As he did in Yankee at the Seder, Gustavson demonstrates a gift for bringing a historical setting to life in his soft, skillfully composed oil paintings. Ages 6–11. Illustrator’s agent: Abigail Samoun, Red Fox Literary. (Apr.)
Children's Literature - Anne Pechnyo
"With his game-saving play, Hoy has made history. He became the first player ever to throw out three runners at home plate in one game!" This is just one of the things center fielder William Hoy was the first to do: he was also the first everyday-position deaf player to play professional baseball. Readers will find that Hoy overcame many challenges, but was always patient and level-headed. He worked hard at everything he tried, but never giving up his dream to play professional baseball. Wise tells Hoy's biography thoroughly without being too wordy. The text is easy to read, and gives the reader just enough information about each important time in Hoy's life, from his childhood to his years playing baseball to his life after his retirement from baseball. An afterword at the end of the story gives the reader statistics from Hoy's career as well as a list of the Halls of Fame he into which has been inducted. Wise also gives the reader an important lesson in political correctness, pointing out the Hoy embraced the nickname "Dummy" because, at the time, the word dumb meant "lacking the power of speech," but that the term now is "derogatory, and the nickname is offensive." Sports fans and biography enthusiasts alike will be inspired by Wise's words and captivated by Gustavson's oil on paper paintings. Wise's words are typed into each illustration, making the book look like an old scrapbook with bent edges and other imperfections. A great addition to the biography section of public, school, and home libraries; this will serve the Common Core Curriculum standards for nonfiction at the elementary level. Reviewer: Anne Pechnyo
Kirkus Reviews
At a time when deaf people were routinely called "Dummy," William Hoy accepted and owned the nickname proudly. He had become deaf as a result of meningitis and endured loneliness and isolation before attending a school for the deaf, learning American Sign Language and joining the school baseball team. Starting on an amateur team and moving into professional baseball in the minor leagues, he used ingenuity and acute observation to overcome difficulties in following umpires' calls and to anticipate possible plays in every situation. He played for 14 years with several major league teams, racking up solid statistics and several fielding records. Fans tossed confetti and waved arms, hats and handkerchiefs to let him know that they were cheering for him. When he faced a deaf pitcher in a historic game in 1902, each signed recognition of the other's remarkable achievements. Employing rich descriptive language with just the right combination of drama and information, Wise emphasizes Hoy's steadfastness and determination in his baseball exploits and in every endeavor before and after his career. Gustavson's sharply detailed illustrations, rendered in oil on paper, follow the text faithfully and offer glimpses into the look and feel of life and baseball in the19th century. Line sketches of baseball action and hand signals fill the endpapers. A fascinating introduction to a little-known hero. (author's note, sources, afterward) (Picture book/biography.6-12)

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781600604119
Publisher:
Lee & Low Books, Inc.
Publication date:
04/01/2012
Pages:
40
Sales rank:
353,530
Product dimensions:
7.75(w) x 10.75(h) x (d)
Lexile:
840L (what's this?)
Age Range:
8 - 9 Years

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