Monday, June 1, 2015

Books are also made of paper

I've mentioned it before : I like to read. As a matter of fact, I turned a hobby into a full time job, which I suppose makes me one of the lucky ones (except you never make a lot of money that way but hey, who cares ? ). I'll read about 100 to 150 novels per year and I'm curious and open enough that I won't focus on just one type of literature. Plenty to discover out there, and it's really one of my great joys in life. Maybe one day I'll give you my top 10 books of all time, you can never get enough lists.

But enough bragging.

When I was younger, ie a long, long time ago, I'd mainly read Stephen King books and the occasional sports book. There wasn't the Internet back then to let me know what existed, but I did have a great American bookstore in Paris that I'd go to to buy cards first and foremost, and to have a look at their sports section (and to get the Calvin & Hobbes and Far Side collections every year).

Here are the baseball ones I've read so far :

This was written right after the first Championship in 92. I'm actually reading it again 20 years later. It's far from flawless (not very well written to say the least), but it's entertaining and it's always great to learn about the history of your favorite team. Even when it's Canadian. Today, the cover would read 'an insider's look at 38 years of BLue Jay baseball'. How time flies...

The typical biography, I suppose, of a very impressive player .

I remember really loving that book back then. Helped me learn a lot about the Yankees and their Dynasty. A behind the scenes look at the 61 season, where you find yourself really rooting for Maris.

I have no recollection at all of that book. Probably as well too.

I probably didn't have the necessary knowledge of baseball at the time to fully appreciate that one. I'll have to read it again today ! I also have the sequel. (and I really need to get myself some Jim Bouton cards)

 A truly great read, and I remember spending long nights reading it and immersing in pre-war baseball.

I was a little disappointed at the time because I didn't know most of the pitchers he wrote about (they weren't in the 93 UD set !). But there are a lot of fun stories in there.

Roger Angell seems to be one of the best sportswriters out there, and I can understand his reputation by reading this book.

This one's a little different since it's fiction, but I encourage you all to have a look, as it's one of the most hilarious books I've ever read.

And I still have a book about Joe DiMaggio and The Boys of summer on my book pile.

I'm always on the lookout for great reads about the history of baseball, so if you have some to share, I'd love to add them to my list !


  1. I've been planning to write a post similar to this lately, hopefully I'll get around to it soon. Ball Four is probably my all-time favorite baseball book. I'd also recommend "Cardboard Gods" by Josh Wilker if you haven't read that one already...probably #2 on my list.

  2. Have you read any of Dirk Hayhurst's books? They are very entertaining.

  3. If you're looking a little further back in time, you should check out "Pennant Race" by Jim Brosnan. He was a Reds pitcher in the early 1960s, and I've heard others say that his book was "Ball Four without the womanizing." It's a great look behind the scenes of a season, and he is a far better writer than Bouton, to be honest.