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School Library Journal
The title, implying a focus on the Cubs, may limit interest in a book that really embraces much more. It does look at devoted Cubs fans-and all baseball fans-and their "brainy" obsession with the game, including their brains' ways of reckoning with loss. The essays are by neuroscientists and two or three informed journalists, and they are accessible to all interested readers. Among the subjects covered are the mental machinery of a professional hitter in seeing a pitch come toward him and, with speed faster than the ball, assessing the throw, judging whether it is a ball or a strike, and deciding whether or not to swing; "handedness" in the game (are lefthanders really superior in baseball?); and, more abstractly, our human capacity for dealing with loss and maintaining hope, as well as baseball's long-standing culture of superstitious belief in curses. This is for all curious readers intrigued by the intersection of baseball and the sciences and in exploring old topics in new ways.
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