Goodnight Baseball

Michael Dahl, Author, Christina E Forshay, Illustrator
Michael Dahl, illus. by Christina Forshay. Capstone, $14.95 (32p) ISBN 978-1-62370-000-3
Reviewed on: 01/14/2013
Release date: 03/01/2013
Paperback - 978-1-4795-4975-7
Hardcover - 1 pages - 978-1-4048-7979-9
Book - 978-1-4795-1544-8
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Created in partnership with Sports Illustrated Kids, this uneven tribute to baseball chronicles a father-son outing to a stadium on game day. At times, Dahl’s singsong couplets suggest that the boy is narrating (“We eat popcorn and hot dogs and hold drinks in our laps.../ with the names of our favorite teams bright on our caps”), but at other moments, the verse seems to view events from an outside perspective: “Look! The ball lands in one lucky fan’s mitt!” writes Dahl (the Hello Genius books), as the same boy catches one batter’s home run. The pace of the story drops off in the second half, as it moves into bedtime mode: “Good-night, diamond. Goodnight grass./ Goodnight, home plate where each runner ran past.” Forshay’s (The Really Groovy Story of the Tortoise and the Hare) energized illustrations are a high point, handily conveying the excitement of a nighttime game, while smoothly bringing the mood down as the boy falls sleep on the drive back home. A minor-league addition to the crowded shelf of baseball-themed picture books. Ages 4–7. (Mar.)
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