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From Barnes & NobleThe Barnes & Noble Review
Pulitzer Prize-winner Michael Chabon is now giving a nod to younger audiences with this wondrous fantasy triumph about magical parallel worlds, the legend of baseball, and one boy's amazing journey to save the universe.
Ethan Feld has never been prone to adventure or attention, especially since he's often ridiculed about his lame baseball playing. But after he awakens one day to find a werefox sitting on his chest, Ethan learns he's ripe for a "fantastic destiny" in the Summerlands -- part of a connected, hidden world, where small American Indian-like ferishers play ball, and evil Coyote is thirsty to destroy the universe. Ethan agrees to the job, but when his father is kidnapped, his mission becomes more personal than he bargained for. With a team of ragtag players called Big Chief Cinquefoil's Traveling Shadowtails All-Star Baseball Club -- including the feisty pitcher Jennifer T., Thor Wignutt (a boy who's not quite a boy), a she-Sasquatch named Taffy, and the Anaheim Angels' Rodrigo Buendía -- Ethan treks through the Summerlands playing against incredible creatures and an impending time limit, hoping to reach his dad. Little does he know, however, that his abilities will be tested in the biggest baseball showdown of all time.
In a breathtaking work, Chabon successfully weaves a solid American-made fantasy, incorporating Native American lore, tall tales, and our nation's greatest pastime to make a modern-day tale of good versus evil. Young readers and adults alike will be rooting for Ethan all the way during his odyssey, and they'll be intrigued at how Chabon portrays the origins of the world, along with the wickedness that's out to destroy it. With the awesomeness of Sandy Koufax's fastball and the drama of Ty Cobb's swing, Summerland is an adventure that keeps you riveted until the last play. Matt Warner