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The Prince of Fenway Park Hardcover – March 24, 2009


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Editorial Reviews

From School Library Journal

Grade 5–7—To baseball fans, "The Curse" means only one thing: the Red Sox's 86-year-long failure to win a World Series because their owner sold a young Babe Ruth to the Yankees in 1919. Working from the brilliant premise that an enraged half-elven fan actually did curse the team, Baggott populates tunnels and back rooms around Fenway Park with a cast of magical creatures from the Banshee ("The Lost Soul of the Lost and Found") to a two-headed sportscaster named The Bobs—and sends into their midst 12-year-old Oscar Egg, a human child destined to break The Curse at last. Baseball is, however, only the context here; the story is really about racism, as exemplified both in Oscar's ruminations over his own mixed ancestry and in what he knows or discovers about the Sox's (and Major League Baseball's) dismal historical reluctance to break the color line. Traveling into the past, Oscar gathers up 12-year-old versions of Babe Ruth, Jackie Robinson, Ted Williams, Willie Mays and other stars for a climactic game against the less-worthy likes of Ty Cobb, Gaylord Perry, and Pete Rose at the same age. Before stands filled with the ghosts of taunting bigots and cheering supporters, that game plays out in tandem with the classic 2004 contest that turned the Yankees-Red Sox playoffs, and the Curse, around. Both whimsical and provocative (the "N" word crops up in some historical references), this story will engage readers who like clever tales, and also those who enjoy chewing over controversial themes.—John Peters, New York Public Library
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

Review

“Offers an intriguing angle to spark discussions” (ALA Booklist)

“Both whimsical and provocative” (School Library Journal)

“Young sports fans will revel in Baggott’s underworld…[and] will dig their cleats in for a thoroughly involving tale.” (Kirkus Reviews)
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Product Details

  • Age Range: 8 - 12 years
  • Grade Level: 4 - 7
  • Lexile Measure: 620L (What's this?)
  • Series: AWARDS: Sunshine State Young Readers Awards 2011-2012 Grades 6-8
  • Hardcover: 336 pages
  • Publisher: HarperCollins (March 24, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 006087242X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0060872427
  • Product Dimensions: 8.6 x 5.5 x 1.1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 13.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (41 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,160,440 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Critically acclaimed, bestselling author, Julianna Baggott -- who also writes under the pen names Bridget Asher (The Provence Cure for the Brokenhearted) and N.E. Bode (The Anybodies) -- has published 17 books, including novels for adults, younger readers, and collections of poetry. Her latest novel, PURE, is the first of a trilogy; film rights have sold to Fox2000 -- www.pure-book.com. Her work has appeared in the New York Times, Washington Post, Boston Globe, Best American Poetry, Best Creative Nonfiction, Real Simple, on NPR.org, as well as read on NPR's "Talk of the Nation" and "Here and Now." Her novels have been book-pick selections by People Magazine's summer reading, Washington Post book-of-the-week, a Booksense selection, a Boston Herald Book Club selection, and a Kirkus Best Books of the Year list. Her novels have been published in over 50 overseas editions. She's a professor in the Creative Writing Program at Florida State University and the founder of the nonprofit Kids in Need - Books in Deed. For more, visit www.juliannabaggott.com.

Customer Reviews

Thank you, Julianna, for an adventure that will be enjoyed by baseball and fantasy fans alike.
Becky Thomas
N. T. The prince of Fenway park By:Julianna Baggott This book is about a twelve year old Named Oscar Egg believes that he is Cursed, just like the Boston Red Sox.
Joshua
By the end of the book, I felt moved by the main character (Oscar) and his growth through out the story.
H. Feldman

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Nutty on April 8, 2009
Format: Hardcover
In the interest of full disclosure, I should say that I've been a Red Sox fan my whole life, which is why I picked up the book.
The path that the protagonist takes, a mixed-race adopted child of what turns out to be a mixed-race (though not how you'd expect) parents goes from our reality to the fantasy world of Irish folklore to be entwined with baseball history and then back to our present reality.
Although this book is targeted at young adults (Oscar, the title-character has his 12th birthday during the course of the story), the book deals with issues that anyone with a love for the game and a respect for its history will understand as central to the game's importance in American history.
And then there's a baseball game of 12-year-old greats and how cool is that!
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By floridaminnie on April 4, 2009
Format: Hardcover
I'm a Tampa Bay Ray's fan here and was a little hesitate about a tween book that promotes the Red Socks. The story begins with a orphan, Oscar that just does not fit in at school or at home. He finally finds a "home" after being deserted and unwated once more and discovers that he has gift. He could be the one to break the curse. This book continues with Jullianna Baggott's aka N.E. Bode's style of writing. There are twists and turns with magical creatures that live underneath Fenway Park. There is a battle between good and evil to release the curse. Some history is also sprinkled in. Overall a must read for those that enjoy a baseball adventure and root for the underdog!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Jamie Antoun on June 2, 2009
Format: Hardcover
Sinking Springs Elementary
Mrs. Antoun's Fifth Grade
By. Mackenzie S, Cameron P, Liam, Thomas, and Tyler

If you like the the Red Sox, then read this book. A 12 year old boy named Oscar is adopted but only lives with his mom. One day Oscar's mom says she wants to spend some with her boyfriend. So she tells Oscar he has to stay with his father for a month. Oscar goes to with his dad to his house.
He finds out that his father lives on the flip side of Fenway Park. He meets some magical creatures like weasel man and a wave of mice. He finds out his father lives on the flip side of fenway park. He meets some magicial creatures like weasel man and a wave of mice he finds out Oscar's dad is a fairy who has wings. He met three anties. Then Oscar learned why Oscar's parents are divoriced. Then It was Oscars birthday. And he gets a magical gift. If you want to see if oscar breaks the Redsocks curse then read this book.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By C. Junco on July 9, 2009
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
As a lifelong baseball fan, and in particular, as a Red Sox fan, I thoroughly enjoyed The Prince of Fenway Park. It was a wonderful mix of fantasy, family relationships, and baseball. I was especially pleased that the author directly addressed the issue of race within the Red Sox organization. It's almost never talked about, but deserves to be. I plan to read it to my class this year, and use it as a springboard for discussions about America's problem dealing with race.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful A Kid's Review on May 1, 2009
Format: Hardcover
I enjoyed reading this book. I would recommend this for kids 9 & up. If you are familiar with the Anybody series, or The Slippery Map, you know what to expect. If not, you should expect lots of fantasy, with creatures, lots of creatures. There is also mystery, baseball history, and more. You don't have to know baseball history to enjoy this book, it is also about racism, fitting in, and being cursed. Keep all this in mind and enjoy reading The Prince of Fenway Park.
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Format: Paperback
A book intended for ten to fifteen year old readers brings to life the underworld of the Curse of the Bambino; fairies, two headed annoncers, the smoker, weasel man and the pooka among others. They are the fans if you will of the curse. They have always only known it existed so they come to trust in it.
Enter 12 year old Oscar, a mixed race boy who is dropped off on his secretive Dad, without notice to Dad or even Oscar. Oscar learns who his Dad really is, the part he plays in the curse and that he too lives in Fwnway Park.
Full of many true to life details, including the Red Sox' notoriously anti integration stance, that bordered on outright racism. The 'N' word is even used several times but within believable historical context. History isn't always sanitized and pretty.
Oscar takes a ride with the mysterious pooka and finds out what he needs to do to break the curse. Get the magic baseball that has been stitched together with red string by Babe Ruth himself!
Oscar learns to be proud of his heratige, his family especially his Dad, and his place in the history of the curse and it's demise.
Throw in a winner take all game of the good vs evil teams of Red Sox past and present, but as twelve year olds! It takes place in Fenway Park during the Red Sox ployoff series win over arch rival New York Yankees, in which the Sox overcame a 0-3 games deficit and went on to win their first World Sweeries in 86 years, or since 1918.
Part fact, part fiction, liberally dosed with fantasy to help keep young readers glued to a sometimes difficult history of the Boston Red Sox.Reccomended for Red Sox fans of all ages, and baseball fans in general, it will prompt honest discussion of some of the more negative history of the Red Sox, while celebrating the end of the Curse of the Bambino.
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