The Dixon Cornbelt League and Other Baseball Stories

Overview


Shortstops who run with the wolves, painted eggs that reveal deeply disturbing meanings, long-dead Hall of Famers who miraculously return to the game, an Iowa minor-league town with a secret conspiracy: these are the elements from which W. P. Kinsella weaves nine fabulous stories about the magical world of baseball.

From the dugouts, clubhouses, bedrooms, and barrooms to the interior worlds of hope and despair, these eerie stories present the absurdities of human ...

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Overview


Shortstops who run with the wolves, painted eggs that reveal deeply disturbing meanings, long-dead Hall of Famers who miraculously return to the game, an Iowa minor-league town with a secret conspiracy: these are the elements from which W. P. Kinsella weaves nine fabulous stories about the magical world of baseball.

From the dugouts, clubhouses, bedrooms, and barrooms to the interior worlds of hope and despair, these eerie stories present the absurdities of human relationships and reveal the writer's special genius for touching the heart.

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Editorial Reviews

New York Times

"[Kinsella] defines a world in which magic and reality combine to make us laugh and think about the perceptions we take for granted."—New York Times
Calgary Sun

"His short stories about baseball are wistful things of beauty which serve to remind us how the game should feel—the innate glory of a diamond etched in the minds of Americans."—Calgary Sun
Booklist

"[Kinsella] uses baseball. . . . As a familiar starting place for exploring, with pinpoint control, the human psyche."—Booklist
New York Times

"[Kinsella] defines a world in which magic and reality combine to make us laugh and think about the perceptions we take for granted."—New York Times

Calgary Sun

"His short stories about baseball are wistful things of beauty which serve to remind us how the game should feel—the innate glory of a diamond etched in the minds of Americans."—Calgary Sun

Booklist

"[Kinsella] uses baseball. . . . As a familiar starting place for exploring, with pinpoint control, the human psyche."—Booklist

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
Once again blending magical and spiritual themes with a baseball setting, Kinsella (Shoeless Joe; Box Socials) takes a light, breezy approach in this mildly satisfying but somewhat redundant collection of nine tales. The plot pattern is remarkably similar from story to story, beginning with the introduction of a seemingly incredible, silly or trivial anomaly that often conceals a darker conflict. A gentle spoof of magical realism, ``The Baseball Wolf,'' raises the issue of our animal nature through a slick-fielding shortstop in an obscure Latin-American league who tries to jump-start his career by undergoing a mystical lupine transformation. The title story follows a parallel trail, introducing an ominous, barely known Iowa minor league that actually functions as a vehicle for repopulating the dying farm towns in the region. ``Eggs'' deals more directly with a serious theme, its protagonist a pitcher who struggles with rural isolation when the loss of his fastball forces premature retirement to his opulent Alberta home and a wife who is unsympathetic to his desire to return to the game. Kinsella clearly is steeped in his sports motif, churning out stories that read like lightning and tantalize the reader with fascinating scenarios. But, like a meal that consists of nothing but appetizers, the similarity of tone and structure ultimately becomes tiresome, and Kinsella's reluctance to plumb the depths of his characters' struggles may leave readers hungering for some meatier material. (Feb.)
Library Journal
More baseball stories from the master of the genre.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780803278165
  • Publisher: University of Nebraska Press
  • Publication date: 8/1/2004
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Pages: 180
  • Product dimensions: 5.00 (w) x 7.90 (h) x 0.50 (d)

Meet the Author


W. P. Kinsella is the author of more than two hundred short stories and fifteen books, including The Iowa Baseball Confederacy and Shoeless Joe, which became the basis for the film Field of Dreams. A graduate of the Iowa Writers' Workshop, Kinsella has been honored with the prestigious Houghton Mifflin Literary Fellowship and has taught writing at the University of Victoria.
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Table of Contents

The Baseball Wolf 1
The Fadeaway 23
The Darkness Deep Inside 41
Eggs 69
How Manny Embarquadero Overcame and Began His Climb to the Major Leagues 87
Searching for January 109
Feet of Clay 121
Lumpy Drobot, Designated Hitter 137
The Dixon Cornbelt League 157
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