The Progress of the Seasons: Forty Years of Baseball in Our Town

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
Higgins ( Wonderful Years, Wonderful Years ; The Friends of Eddie Coyle, etc.) grew up in Boston, and in this history of the Red Sox, he weaves the events of his life into the hometown backdrop of athletic non-achievement at the shrine of Fenway Park. Indoctrinated into the sect of Red Sox fandom at seven, when his father, a high school principal, and his banker grandfather took him to Fenway in 1946 (known as the year Sox infielder Johnny Pesky was ``late throwing home'' in the World Series), the author alternately recalls and rails at the goings-on of the past 40 years. The Sox haven't won the World Series since 1918, yet baseball is what keeps New Englanders alive, he asserts: everyone knows the Sox won't triumph, but each season begins with fans devoutly believing that ``this is the year the Sox finally win the Series.'' Higgins's affectionate look at the Sox is enhanced by an unabashed Boston boosterism and a loving reminiscence of his baseball-oriented family. At times he appears mired in a lengthy newspaper column on Sox fans' frustrations; however, his obvious love, zeal and attachment to the subject enable him to tell his tale with style. ( Apr.)
Library Journal
To appreciate this book fully, it would probably help to know the Red Sox or to have visited Boston's Fenway Park. But the universality of baseball, its reflection of the cycles of life, and its stability amid change are themes presented by Higgins (a Boston criminal lawyer and veteran novelist of such works as The Friends of Eddie Coyle) in a storytelling mode similar to Thorton Wilder's Our Town. Higgins begins his baseball meditation with attending a game in Fenway in 1946 with his father and grandfather and closes with watching games today in the company of his son. Higgins plays with variations of John Pesky's assessment of baseball as a simple game that is hard to play. As love songs to Fenway Park go, this compares favorably with essays by Donald Hall (in his Fathers Playing Catch with Sons: Essays on Sport, Mostly Baseball, LJ 12/84) and John Updike (in Assorted Prose , Knopf, 1960). Good reading for adults.-- Thomas J. Reigstad, SUNY Coll., Buffalo
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780137283040
  • Publisher: Touchstone
  • Publication date: 4/1/1990
  • Edition description: 1st Prentice Hall ed
  • Pages: 228

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