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Home of the Brave (Sluggers) Hardcover – May 4, 2010

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Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Loren Long illustrated President Barack Obama’s Of Thee I Sing; the newest version of The Little Engine that Could; Madonna’s second picture book, Mr. Peabody’s Apples; Nightsong by Ari Berk; and the Barnstormers series. He also illustrated Frank McCourt’s Angela and the Baby Jesus and is part of the Design Garage for Jon Scieszka’s Trucktown series. Loren’s work has appeared in Time, Sports Illustrated, Forbes, The Wall Street Journal, and The Atlantic. He lives with his wife and two sons in Westchester, Ohio. Visit him at

Phil Bildner is the author of the New York Times bestselling Sluggers! series, the Texas Bluebonnet Award–winning Shoeless Joe & Black Betsy, its companion The Shot Heard ‘Round the World, and Turkey Bowl illustrated by C.F. Payne; and Twenty-One Elephants, illustrated by LeUyen Pham. He lives in Brooklyn, New York.

Excerpt. © Reprinted by permission. All rights reserved.


In Ruby’s Words

© 2010 Phil Bildner

Product Details

  • Age Range: 8 - 12 years
  • Grade Level: 3 - 7
  • Lexile Measure: 740L (What's this?)
  • Series: Sluggers (Book 6)
  • Hardcover: 336 pages
  • Publisher: Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers; 1 edition (May 4, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 141691868X
  • ISBN-13: 978-1416918684
  • Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 1.2 x 8.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #445,058 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
As the Payne children and the barnstormers prepare to leave New Orleans, the Chancellor's thugs carry out a vicious and deadly attack. During a hail of gunfire, Truman, the brave dog of Preacher Wil, is injured while trying to protect Ruby, Graham and Griffith. While bullets fly, the magic baseball saves Graham's life, just as it saved Uncle Owen during the war in Cuba. By the end of the attack, the Chancellor's men have snatched the magic baseball, and Uncle Owen's luck has run out. His dying words puzzle and confuse the young Paynes.

With the Chancellor's men still in pursuit, the Payne family and the barnstormers hop a train and head for Baltimore to bury Uncle Owen. Now that the Chancellor has the baseball, he believes he controls the destiny of the game --- and still demands payment for Uncle Owen's debt. While grieving for the loss of their uncle, the children must come up with $10,000 by the end of the month, and they are one player short. After switching trains one morning in the nation's capital, they take a chance and emerge from the station. As they walk down the streets and take in the sights, a familiar figure emerges from the fog. They have found their ninth player.

Their match is to be held at Union Park against the Baltimore Bombers in celebration of the 75th anniversary of the national anthem. But the evil and greedy Chancellor doesn't want to lose, so he has assembled a team with half of the Bombers coming from the Baltimore Orioles. While promoting the game, Graham meets a young player with exceptional gifts. On the day of the game at Union Park, flags flare, rockets glare and bombs blast through the air, but even more shocking and thrilling events await the team.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By E Cass on November 3, 2010
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I am a 3rd grade teacher and this book is highly loved by my students. This is the 6th book in the Sluggers series. It lets u know all about the magic baseball that the Payne children have. So many questions we had from the previous 5 books were answered in this book. My favorite character in the story was Ruby because Ruby was a very intelligent girl. She wrote down a lot of fact that helped solve mysteries. She also was brave and loved her family. We liked this book because it was an entire series of books that made my students want to read. There were so many cliffhangers in the books that we had to read all 6 of them last year!

You should read this book because it is amazing how the author puts what is in history into the book and makes you want to read more and more. We were so sad when the series was over. We think this series should be turned into movies! They'd be blockbuster hits for sure!!

All ages of people would love this book. From 8 year olds up to 80 year olds!
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Format: Paperback
I previously reviewed book 1 in this series, Magic in the Outfield (Sluggers #1). In that review, I mentioned how book 1 felt like half of a book, but that books 1 and 2 combined were satisfying to my 6 year old son. Books 3 and 4 were like 1 and 2 in that way - very hard to stop at the end of book 3. However, as the books progress, the mystery-shrouded background becomes gradually clearer until finally in this book you really understand what's going on and what's at stake.

Partly for that reason, partly because of an exciting baseball game, and partly because of a new little kid introduced who seems to be even better at baseball than Graham, this book is the best in the series. My son totally loved it and was far more gripped by it than any of the other books.

As in all the books, it feels like you're truly in another time and place:

* great black and white artwork
* use of colorful, old-time baseball language
* colorful, memorable characters

In all the books, my son totally loved the old-time language like "daisy cutters" and "pill" and "hurler," etc. He thought the books were good but the first was the slowest of them and this last book had the most gripping action. It was also the scariest book of the 6, which was appealing to my son.

I stick with my conclusion from book 1: I think this series is great for the kid that loves baseball and likes reading series, including my own son. But just understand that you really need to read this series in its entirety, starting from book 1, to fully appreciate it.
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By faith on July 16, 2014
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Grandson loved it!!
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