News and Reviews

Books

Here’s the Pitch by Roberta J. Newman

Last Seasons in Havana by César Brioso

Awarded the SABR Baseball Research Award!

The Called Shot: Babe Ruth, the Chicago Cubs, and the Unforgettable Major League Season of 1932

Thomas Wolf

Starred review in Publishers Weekly:

“Wolf (coauthor, Midnight Assassin: A Murder in America’s Heartland), delivers a solid and exciting look at the 1932 baseball season, “one of the most remarkable seasons in the history of the sport”… Wolf also provides an excellent look at how Ruth transformed from the excellent Yankee pitcher who lost to the Cubs in the 1918 World Series into the legendary slugger of 1932. Baseball fans will delight in this thrillingly told history.”

The Journey of Liu Xiaobo: From Dark Horse to Nobel Laureate

Joanne Leedom-Ackerman

Review in the South China Morning Post:

“One of the strengths of The Journey of Liu Xiaobo is the probity and conviction of its articles, all but five of which were translated from Chinese into English. Many of the authors didn’t just know Liu intimately but clearly display a deep knowledge of Chinese politics and culture.”

Sabotaged: Dreams of Utopia in Texas

James Pratt

Featured in Failure Magazine:

“In 1855 a diverse group of European intellectuals attempted to establish a new society near present-day Dallas. La Réunion was “the last major attempt by adepts of French philosopher Charles Fourier to reconstruct the whole of society as a utopia,” advises author James Pratt in Sabotaged: Dreams of Utopia in Texas (Bison Books), published posthumously last month.”

Oscar Charleston: The Life and Legend of Baseball’s Greatest Forgotten Player

Jeremy Beer

Featured in the Memphis Flyer:

“By every measure a member of the Negro Leagues Rushmore (along with Satchel Paige, Josh Gibson, and Cool Papa Bell), Charleston was called ‘the greatest player I’ve seen’ by the late Buck O’Neil, a man who saw a lot of great baseball players, both before and after Jackie Robinson played his first game for the Brooklyn Dodgers. Aside from the smiling faces of my colleagues, I miss nothing like I miss baseball, and author Jeremy Beer has delivered a treasure to fill the hours between vintage games on the MLB Network.”

Pastime Lost: The Humble, Original, and Now Completely Forgotten Game of English Baseball

David Block

Review on Idrotts Forum:

“In his new book Pastime Lost: The Humble Original, and Now Completely Forgotten Game of English Baseball, Block revises some of his old conclusions and after long and laborious searching presents new historical findings that increase the state of knowledge about baseball’s early history… Pastime Lost is written by an in every way outstanding baseball scholar, and I find it hard to see that someone should be able to exceed the contribution that David Block had added to its history.”

The Wax Pack: On the Open Road In Search of Baseball’s Afterlife

Brad Balukjian

Recommended by New York Sports Day:

“If you’ve binge-watched everything you can find on a gazillion channels, from ‘The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel’ to ‘Star Trek: Picard,; here’s a fascinating new book to consider for your reading repertoire…’The Wax Pack’ is a journey worth waiting for, worth taking. Enjoy the ride.”

Isabel “Lefty” Alvarez: The Improbable Life of a Cuban American Baseball Star

Kat D. Williams

Reviewed by The Sports Bookie:

“Kat D. Williams has taken a different angle, concentrating on women’s baseball, and specifically, the career of Isabel ‘Lefty’ Alvarez… Historians will enjoy the stories about women’s baseball and the turbulent times in Cuba under Batista, which eventually came under the thumb of another dictator, Fidel Castro. Williams writes in a sentimental tone, but it works. One cannot help but root for the dark-haired, left-handed 15-year-old pitcher, who came to the United States with hardly any education and no command of the language.”

The Colonel and Hug: The Partnership That Transformed the New York Yankees

Steven Steinberg & Lyle Spatz

Featured in The Score:

“Steinberg’s book, co-authored with fellow historian Lyle Spatz, exists to emphasize that Ruppert and Huggins’ contributions to the cause of lording over the AL were, indeed, vital. Even before Ruth’s rights were purchased and Lou Gehrig signed, these kindred spirits—two introverted bachelors who trusted each other and shared a singular zeal to win—had started laying the groundwork for the Yankees to become baseball’s most frequent champion of the past 100 years.”

Siberian Exile: Blood, War, and a Granddaughter’s Reckoning

Julija Šukys

Review in River Teeth:

“I don’t think 166 pages can be more complex than they are in Siberian Exile. This is both exciting, enlightening, harrowing, and frustrating for the reader.”

Authors

Brad Balukjian

Interview in Forbes and Five Thirty Eight.

Robert K. Fitts

Guest on This Week In Baseball History.

Richard D. Easton

Interview on The Space Shot and Unqualified for Space.

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