Sure, Harris's most acclaimed novel, the second of his Henry Wiggen books, centers around a pair of ballplayers for the fictionally fabled New York Mammoths--the novel's narrator, pitcher Wiggen, and Bruce Pearson, his tag-along catcher and best friend. And sure, on one level, it's the conventional tale of a disparate dugout population cohering over the course of a season and marching ineluctably toward the World Series. But convention, like a 55-foot curveball, ends there and then scoots off in its own unpredictable direction. Harris's story--funny, bittersweet, and affecting--is, in the end, a haunting meditation on life, death, friendship, and loyalty. That it's set against the backdrop of the Major Leagues makes it a baseball novel. That it's a brilliant study of human nature, passionately felt and beautifully crafted, makes it enduring literature. --Jeff Silverman
--This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
“Bang the Drum Slowly makes wonderful reading—whether one hates baseball or loves it. . . . It is awfully funny in parts, and laughter is rare enough on anybody’s bookshelf.”—New York Times
(New York Times
“What makes Bang the Drum Slowly unique . . . is author Harris’s mastery of his offbeat scene. . . . The talk is natural, larded with casual humor, and earthiness. . . . Harris has measured [his characters] with his heart as well as his eye and ear.”—Time