Slugger

Slugger

by Susan Pearson, David Slonim
     
 

Ollie was a slug who loved everything about baseball. More than anything in the world, he wanted to make the team. Trouble was, he couldn’t hold a bat. He wasn’t much of a pitcher either. And he was pretty slow at running the bases. But Ollie was one determined slug...and finally he got his Big Chance.  See more details below

Overview

Ollie was a slug who loved everything about baseball. More than anything in the world, he wanted to make the team. Trouble was, he couldn’t hold a bat. He wasn’t much of a pitcher either. And he was pretty slow at running the bases. But Ollie was one determined slug...and finally he got his Big Chance.

Editorial Reviews

Children's Literature - Claudia Mills
Author Pearson continues her love affair with the lowly slug (Slugs in Love, How to Teach a Slug to Read) with this engaging tale about a baseball-besotted slug who decides to try out for the position of—what else?—a slugger. Of course, he has no arms to hold a bat, but Ollie-the-slug isn't one to let a small problem like that deter him. After all, "Ollie was a slug with a dream." Making his dream come true involves outfitting himself with a "Super-Slugger-Hard-Head-#12" helmet (one with bat conveniently built in) and endless hours of dogged practice in wind, rain, and "sweltering sun." Finally, Coach Roach agrees to give Ollie one, and only one, chance to earn a spot on the Creepy Crawlers team in their big game against the Swingin' Stingers. With the score tied in the bottom of the ninth, two outs and two players on base, it's time for Ollie to prove that he has the stuff of which a slugger is made. While it's somewhat difficult to believe that the coach would decide to audition a brand-new, untried player during the most crucial play of a big game, it's undeniably satisfying when Ollie's bat connects with the ball at just the right moment. Slonim's cleverly drawn pictures manage to make a team of insect athletes appealing, creating an overall "sluggiferous" package to delight and inspire young dreamers. Reviewer: Claudia Mills, Ph.D.
School Library Journal
K-Gr 2—The expression "slugger" takes on an entirely new meaning in this tale of a slug with a dream of playing ball. Ollie practices relentlessly for a spot on Coach Roach's insect-infested baseball team, and he finally earns his chance during the big game against the Swingin' Stingers. He scoots up to the muddy plate and, predictably, drives home the winning run. Googly-eyed characters don incredulous expressions as they participate in the sport. Pointed references take a humorous stab at some of the greatest players of all time (e.g.,"Mickey Mantis," "Babe Beetle," et al). While the convenient ending lacks drama, Ollie's feverish determination adds some intensity. "Day after day, in wind…and rain…and sweltering sun, he kept at it." The acrylic, pencil, and ball-point-pen illustrations capture the nimble expressions of the animated backyard critters and use pale colors to convey the mass of the crowds. Some of the jokes fall flat ("It was a SLUGGIFEROUS DAY!"), but all in all, Ollie's efforts move the plot along.—Meg Smith, Cumberland County Public Library, Fayetteville, NC
Kirkus Reviews
A slug with dreams of baseball glory finds success on the diamond thanks to a modified helmet. Ollie loves everything about baseball, especially his favorite team, the Creepy Crawlers. He longs to join such stars as Grasshopper Bob, Bombardier Bill, Mickey Mantis and Babe Beetle. But how? With no arms, he can't very well pitch or catch, and he doesn't exactly light up the base paths with his speed. His only hope is to become a slugger, but there's still that no-arms problem. Ollie is nothing if not persistent, though. Equipped with a helmet-mounted bat, he whiffs at pitch after pitch from pal Sammy Stinkbug in private practice till, finally, he clobbers one. Despite not having witnessed this, Coach Roach gives him one try, and on a made-to-slug-order rainy, sloppy day, Ollie drives in Grasshopper Bob for victory and a place in the lineup. There's not much to make the story stand out; Ollie's success is a foregone conclusion, and his path to it is so truncated it would be unbelievable even if he did have arms. There's mild amusement in Slonim's depictions of Ollie twisting himself into knots, eyestalks crossed crazily as he powers the business end of his bat through a swing. The illustrations don't follow through on the story's logic, though, picturing him somehow holding variously a bag of popcorn and a book despite his armlessness. A blooper. (Picture book. 3-7)

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781477816417
Publisher:
Amazon Childrens Publishing
Publication date:
03/19/2013
Product dimensions:
8.80(w) x 11.10(h) x 0.50(d)
Lexile:
AD470L (what's this?)
Age Range:
4 - 8 Years

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