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Feeding the Green Monster: One Man's Season at Fenway Park Paperback – August 15, 2001


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 324 pages
  • Publisher: Grand Central Publishing; First Edition edition (August 15, 2001)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 075955028X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0759550285
  • Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 0.7 x 8.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 14.6 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 3.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (23 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,430,747 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

3.7 out of 5 stars

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

29 of 30 people found the following review helpful By Jason A. Miller VINE VOICE on February 3, 2002
Format: Paperback
Rob Neyer, ESPN.com columnist and cutting-edge baseball writer, attended 114 ballgames during the 2000 season. I attended one, and even that was shortened by rain. He sat in Fenway Park for all 81 Boston Red Sox home games. I saw the Red Sox only during their battles with the Yankees that year, and apart from Scott Brosius's killing-blow home run off Pedro Martinez that September, I remember little. But I devoured "Feeding the Green Monster" in just a few days, racing through the Red Sox's also-ran season just to read what Neyer would have to say about it, wishing I had been there in his entourage.
"Green Monster" is a diary, a confessional -- at the end, Rob writes, "I fell in love twice this season, with a ballpark named Fenway and a woman named (spoiler removed)". There are entries covering Opening Day through the offseason, but not each one is as meticulous or documented as his ESPN.com columns. As with Rob's previous work, the book is better when he's in full-on research mode. The entries concerning Gary Gaetti, Johnny Pesky, the 1946 World Series, and the history of the outfield wall now called the Green Monster, are outstanding.
The personal content is also intriguing, although the fact that the author could devote a whole season to buying tickets at Fenway -- and then flying or riding to 35 other games in other cities -- hints that it might be easier for Neyer to be a baseball fan than most of his readers. I always wanted more details on the people he went to games with -- we come to know Fenway's scalpers better than the author's girlfriends. Passages such as "Baseball fans in these parts are about as moody as a pregnant woman who forgot to each lunch" should have been deleted long before publication.
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18 of 19 people found the following review helpful By Bill Nowlin on November 27, 2001
Format: Paperback
I have just read a review posted on Amazon and want to add a few thoughts. I really enjoyed FEEDING THE GREEN MONSTER and I also confess I also enjoyed PLAYER FOR A MOMENT when I read that a few years ago.
Disclaimer: I met Rob while he was working on this book and we went to a game together. Another time we stayed all night in the park after one game. He says some nice things about me in the book.
I enjoyed the book not because of incisive baseball commentary, a feature of Rob's ESPN columns. I enjoyed it for some of the very reasons the other reviewer did not. It may just be a matter of expectation. To me, FEEDING THE GREEN MONSTER is the story of a real person - a real baseball fan who set out to go to every ballgame in one entire home season, and then did it.
I go to about 25 games a season but I don't know if I could make all 81! That is HARD WORK. I put myself in Rob's shoes as I was reading the book. If you can empathize with a fellow fan - a fan with a mission, but a fan who was all too human at the same time (losing his scorebook with a lot of his notes, getting distracted because of an attractive woman in a nearby seat, suffering the elements on the cold April nights) - then you might find this book rewarding.
There's plenty of baseball in the book, both about the play on the field and about a lot of the circumstances around the game.
One can argue that the book is self-absorbed, but I didn't think it ever pretended to be anything other than a very personal account of one very human fan who slogged through this one full season of baseball and I found that to be its charm.
Bill Nowlin
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16 of 17 people found the following review helpful By W. C HALL VINE VOICE on November 5, 2003
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Rob Neyer lived many a fan's dream during the 2000 major league season when he attended all 81 home games of the Boston Red Sox at their historic home, Fenway Park. But that wasn't the full extent of his baseball watching that summer. He managed to push his season total higher still with games in Seattle, New York, Kansas City and Pawtucket. The book that resulted, "Feeding the Green Monster," is Rob's diary of that busy season. We get plenty of baseball between these covers--and also a lot about Rob's life.

Neyer is a columnist for ESPN.com, and his knowledge of, and passion for the game shine throughout the text. He's also quite eloquent and passionate about Fenway itself, and makes a strong case why this historic ballyard, the oldest left in the major leagues, should not be prematurely retired. One of the highlights for me was the story of how Rob and a friend managed to stay after the end of a game and spend the night in Fenway, exploring every nook, cranny and crevice. It's going to be a long time before anyone can write this way about any of the current crop of "retro" ballparks, and I can never, ever imagine a fan feeling the same way about one of those cookie-cutter stadiums that proliferated in the 60s and 70s.

Sadly, Neyer didn't have much of a season to write about. The BoSox made a promising start that year, remained in contention for their division title for most of the summer, and were in the hunt for the wild card slot almost to the end, but once again fell short against the Yankees. A classic pennant race instead of a sad fade would have made for a more gripping text.

Some of the other reviewers seemed to find the book a bit too self-involved, but such is the nature of a dairy. I had a different take...
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