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The Card: A Van Stone Novel Paperback – April 1, 2011
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"I would recommend this book for the young adult reader; it is fun and eventful, with suspense and action. Van Stone is a strong character, and has an amazing way of dealing with life. Devitt provides some great ballpark background as he delivers the goods." - Seattle Post-Intelligencer
Read more: seattlepi.com/lifestyle/blogcritics/article/Book-Review-The-Card-A-Van-Stone-Novel-by-Jim-1417701.php#ixzz2IpwC8R3B
"The Card is a fast-paced, entertaining action-adventure story both fathers and sons can read and enjoy together. Devitt's experience working in a major league baseball clubhouse adds a really nice element of realism to the story as well. Baseball fans will be drawn to this book, and be even further pleased with the mystery surrounding the "card." - BookDads.com
About the Author
Jim Devitt spent eight years working behind the scenes in a Major League clubhouse. After his time in professional baseball, Jim graduated from Washington State University in Pullman, Washington, with a Bachelor of Science degree in Zoology, and then continued on to complete his Master of Science degree in Education from the University of Miami in Coral Gables, Florida. He has authored and co-authored numerous peer-reviewed research papers and presented at conferences throughout the country. He currently lives in Merritt Island, Florida with his wife Melissa and their two children.
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Top customer reviews
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I was originally looking for a book for my sons to read when I stumbled onto The Card. The cover intrigued me, and after reading the synopsis, I purchased it for myself. What seems to start out as a book about a batboy for the Seattle Mariners quickly turns into a mystery-adventure. (I have to admit, I pride myself on being able to figure out who-done-it, and potential plot twists. The ending on this one caught me completely by surprise!)
I think one most impressed me about this book was that it is completely believable. The characters, Van, Fred and Zoe can be found in any high school. I particularly like how strong a character Zoe is, a great role model for any young lady.
More importantly though, everything they do is feasible. There is no magic, no strange coincidences, or anything that would make you say "yeah right!" (Though I must say Fred's use of bacon grease was brilliant!) The kids even use the metro-bus to travel through Seattle to avoid problems with parking. I've always disliked novels that have people pull up to some place downtown and always seem to find a spot to park.
The novel is well researched, I've been to Safeco field many times, and knew very little about the roof. Better yet, Jim Devitt weaves the facts into the story so well; you don't know you are learning.
As I said, I bought the book for my sons to read, but I thoroughly enjoyed it, and I sincerely hope there will be more to come.
The story follows high school student Van Stone who wins an essay contest to become a batboy for the Seattle Mariners. Shortly after landing his dream job, Van's father gives him what seems to be an innocuous baseball card for his collection. The card turns out to be something much more and plunges Van into a mystery adventure in which he finds himself, his family, and his friends in danger because of the card and its connection to his father's research. If he cannot figure out the mystery of the card, he may end up losing his life, or of those he cares about.
The Card is full of action, suspense, and mystery. Though at first, I had a little trouble getting into the book with its young adult slant, once the mystery-laden plot took off, I found it hard to put down. The story takes several twists and turns and has an ending you won't see coming. The characters are fun, Van representing a maturity beyond his years, his friend Fred being the cut-up, and Zoe bringing a balance to the group.
Jim Devitt displays a strong behind-the-scenes knowledge of a major league baseball clubhouse, though the focus of the story goes far beyond these inner workings. The book is a quick read and has enough suspense to make it difficult to put down.
Overall, I really enjoyed this book. It is a great book for young adults, and for adults once the mystery and action really take hold.
Van Stone is a character built for the long haul. Smart, savvy beyond his years, and with a high emotional I.Q., he is the perfect role model for young adults. In fact, I can't wait for my son to be of an age when he can start reading the Van Stone series. What a great treat it will be for me to read the same books as my son (yes, Devitt's writing keeps adults-- as well as teens-- turning the page). And I hope Devitt continues with the positive messaging found in The Card: Always believe in yourself and never give up. Great writing and a positive message for my son? What more can a man ask for? Thank you Jim Devitt for introducing us to Van Stone. Can't wait for the next installment!
John Jacobsen, author of A Commodore of Errors
Van Stone is an everyday kid who just happened to have landed his dream job as a batboy in the major leagues. I found the characters in this story to be real and believable, acting and reacting to the events that unfold in ways that you could see yourself acting. It's refreshing to find a book that doesn't need to have impossible things happening (or super-human powers) to keep the action going. No wizards or vampires are needed, this is real.
As a parent, this is the type of book I'd like to see my kids reading.
The accuracy of the subject matter and description of the actual locations of the events happening in the Seattle area is also refreshing. Being from the Seattle area, I found that I could actually picture where the events took place as they unfolded.
I would encourage pre-teen and young adults to read this book. My twin ten year old boys are reading it now. They are about half way through the book and loving it.
Great job by Jim Devitt on his first book. I'm hoping that there will be a sequel!
Most recent customer reviews
all Amazon readers.................good reading.........