The William Hoy Story: How a Deaf Baseball Player Changed the Game

Nancy Churnin, illus. by Jez Tuya. Albert Whitman, $16.99 (32p) ISBN 978-0-8075-9192-5
This rousing underdog story from newcomers Churnin and Tuya introduces William Hoy, who became a major-league baseball player in the 1880s, despite being left deaf from a childhood bout with meningitis. Though an early manager tried to take advantage of him, and teammates would hide their mouths so Hoy couldn’t read their lips, Hoy taught his teammates American Sign Language—symbols that Hoy eventually got umpires to use, too, and (possibly) helped pave the way for officiating gestures still in use. Tuya’s bright cartoons give a solid sense of the period, as well as Hoy’s pride, satisfaction—and some hurtful moments—on his way to becoming “king of center field.” An afterword provides additional details about Hoy’s life, personality, and influence. Ages 4–8. Author’s agent: Karen Grencik, Red Fox Literary. Illustrator’s agent: Charlie Bowden, Pickled Ink. (Mar.)
Reviewed on: 12/14/2015
Release date: 03/01/2016
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