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Full Court Paperback – October 15, 1999
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From Publishers Weekly
Baseball and golf may still surpass basketball as a source of literary inspiration, but this ambitious collection of poems and stories shows that hoops, too, can be a writerly muse. The focus here is more on high-school contests and one-on-one competitions than on the pro game. The best pieces chosen by Trudell, who teaches English at the University of Wisconsin, use the game in daring and revealing ways, touching on ideas of masculinity (Nancy Boutilier's "To Throw Like a Boy"), family life (Jonathan Baumbach's "Familiar Games"), life on an Indian reservation (Sherman Alexie's "The Only Traffic Signal on the Reservation Doesn't Flash Red Anymore") and self-awareness (Stephanie Grant's "Posting-Up," set in a Catholic girls school). The oddest story in the bunch, a slam-dunk called "From Downtown at the Buzzer," by SF author George Alec Effinger, cleverly combines basketball with humanity's first contact with an alien race--and inadvertently shows up the sameness of many of the other stories and poems, whose illuminated moments of victory and loss seem heavy and dull by comparison. The simple format--a piece of fiction, then two poems--is like a drive to the basket followed by two quick free throws, so that the collection reads like a special-issue literary magazine, full of small pleasures and brilliant moments but featuring few heights
Copyright 1996 Cahners Business Information, Inc.--This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
From Library Journal
While the literature of baseball has enjoyed a rich tradition, the same cannot be said for basketball. Editor Trudell attempts to narrow the gap with this collection of fiction and poetry. The selections generally fall into three categories: youthful experiences, reflections from the stands, and allusions to aging and death. Included are John Updike, Bobbie Ann Mason, and John Sayles and a host of lesser-known writers (a few entries were the result of an advertisement placed in a trade publication). As might be expected, there is an uneven quality to the work, particularly in the poetry. Notwithstanding the tremendous growth in the popularity of the sport, this is an optional purchase.?William H. Hoffman, Ft. Myers-Lee Cty. P.L., Fla.
Copyright 1996 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.