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Baseball in April and Other Stories Paperback – April 1, 2000

4.2 out of 5 stars 33 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

"Honest and moving," said PW about these 11 contemporary short stories, adding that "Most readers will recognize truths revealed through everyday events and will appreciate Soto's ability to crystallize a moment." Ages 10-up.
Copyright 1991 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From School Library Journal

Grade 4-7-- Insightful about the characteristics of early adolescents, Soto tells 11 short stories about everyday problems of growing up. Latinos in central California are the focus of the stories, but the events are typical of young teens anywhere in the United States. The main characters try out for Little League teams, take karate lessons, try to get the attention of the opposite sex, and are embarrassed by their grandparents' behavior. These day-to-day events reveal the sensitivity, humor, and vulnerability of today's young people. The descriptions and dialogue are used to advantage, helping to create and sustain the mood. A glossary of Spanish terms is included. Young readers should easily identify with the situations, emotions, and outcomes presented in these fine short stories. --Janice C. Hayes, Middle Tennessee State University, Murfreesboro
Copyright 1990 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
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Product Details

  • Age Range: 7 - 10 years
  • Grade Level: 2 - 5
  • Lexile Measure: 830L (What's this?)
  • Paperback: 128 pages
  • Publisher: HMH Books for Young Readers; 1 edition (April 1, 2000)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0152025677
  • ISBN-13: 978-0152025670
  • Product Dimensions: 5.1 x 0.3 x 7.6 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (33 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #22,998 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
I am a college student attending Northern Michigan University in the Elementary Education program. I have read quite a number of books this semester and this has to be my favorite. While at first I was not crazy about reading a book that featured Mexican-Americans, I soon erased any doubt I had about the book. This book was not only about Mexican-Americans, it was about every single child that has grown up in the last twenty years. Mr. Soto has truly captured what it is like to grow up. The book talks about riding bikes, talking to girls for the first time, spending time with your grandparents, not having to go on the family vacation for the first time, and wanting to take karate lesson because you saw how cool karate could be. If you have trouble remembering what it was like growing up, read this book and you will remember everything that ever happened to you as a child.
What this book really hits on is that children grow up and have that same hopes and dreams that every other child in the world has. As a future teacher I would recommend this book to every teacher. While the book may not hold a significant academic value, it definitely holds a strong social value for children. It allows children to see that other children are going through the same exact thing they are. I commend Mr. Soto for publishing such a fine book that looks at the world in the simplest of ways; through a child's eyes.
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Format: Paperback
I discovered Gary Soto's poetry in a public library in Nebraska. Then I read his short stories, my favorite being "Baseball in April." Like his poetry, these stories are beautiful in that they reveal a child's inner thought life; they also show the challenges that teenagers go through.

Soto takes us back to his childhood in California. The stories occur in sunny Fresno, which is in the Central Valley. The characters, dilemmas, and emotions that he evokes are so real that I often read them over saying, "Yes, I remember feeling like that."

I mostly read adult literature but have been reading a lot in young adult literature, because I often forget what it was like to be a young boy. Soto has a gift for recalling these events and making them come alive again. I've read this collection three times and have read all of Soto's poetry. I hightly recommend "Baseball in April," as well as the poetry collection "Black Hair."

Also recommended: How to Lose Your Faith in Divinity School
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By A Customer on May 25, 2001
Format: Paperback
It delivers a warm Mexican-American voice, and speaks to middle schoolers with great authenticity. My Mexican-American students who read this book have commented: "This book is about me, I can't believe how real it is." "Do you have more books by Gary Soto, I want to read them all." I never read a book like this before, it's so real."
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I bought just one copy of the book, but I put it under the document camera and on the Interwrite board. I had a very small ESL reading class (only 12 students), and they got a big kick out of most of the stories in this book. All of the students were 6th and 7th grade Hispanic students and they could really relate to the stories about Hispanics in CA who were there their age.
The book arrived quickly and I was able to find some free lesson plans online to print out. A great buy and I plan to use the book again with another class of students this year. I'm sure they'll like the stories, too. If I didn't have to buy books myself without reimbursement, I'd sure buy at set of these books!
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A Kid's Review on January 7, 2005
Format: Paperback
This book has a ton of stories with mostly latino characters. The characters are all different but all seem nice. Gary Soto uses discriptive writing like "Alfonso sat on the porch trying to push his crooked teeth to where he thought they belonged. He hated the way they looked." I think Latinos would like this book because they use alot of Latino words. This book is interesting because it has suspence and you dont know whats going to happen next so you want to keep reading on. I will look for more of Gary Soto's books because I like the way he writes.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Gary Soto can see the world through the eyes of children and young adults. My fifth grade students related well to his stories, and so did I. Children are not talked down to. Messages for adults as well. Good for reluctant readers.
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By Valleygirl on December 25, 2012
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I ordered this book to using in my classrooms library, received it and began looking through the stories when I saw it was signed by the author himself! I have since added the book to my home library to keep safe.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This book was required reading for my 5th grade granddaughter. She liked the baseball story, but not the "other" ones. There were 11 other books on her reading list, and this was one of her least favorites. Where the Red Fern Grows was her favorite, also Hatchet.
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