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Jack and Larry: Jack Graney and Larry, the Cleveland Baseball Dog Paperback – January 14, 2012

3.9 out of 5 stars 9 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Review

This is a must read for dog and baseball lovers everywhere.   -- Rockford Examiner

. . . the book and its two heroes remind us of how persistence and determination sometimes trump sheer ability and talent. -- Reading Today Online

Those who pick this book up  . . . will be rewarded with a quirky, unconventional look at baseball history. -- Booklist Online

The best part is that it tells an unknown piece of baseball history in a very unique way . . . . I highly recommend this one. -- McLiterature

Gregorich pulls readers in, those who are fans of the game and those who aren't. The reader is able to form an emotional connection with both Jack and Larry, experiencing the ups and downs of the world of major league baseball as Jack faces disappointment, joy, and heartache. -- Tennessee Council of Teachers of English

About the Author

Barbara Gregorich is the award-winning author of Women at Play: The Story of Women in Baseball, as well as of the baseball novel, She's on First. Throughout her writing career she has written for both adults and children, but never before in the same book. Jack and Larry is a story for all ages. A member of the Author's Guild, the Society of Children's Book Writers and Illustrators, the Mystery Writers of America, and the Society for American Baseball Research, Gregorich lives in Chicago. Her website is barbaragregorich.com
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Product Details

  • Age Range: 10 - 13 years
  • Grade Level: 5 - 8
  • Paperback: 102 pages
  • Publisher: CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform (January 14, 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1467958018
  • ISBN-13: 978-1467958011
  • Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 0.2 x 8.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 6.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (9 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,746,240 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Chris Jennison on February 6, 2012
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This is an engaging story, conveyed via free verse that adds flow and atmosphere to a rousing baseball legend. Jack Graney played for the Cleveland Naps, named for their manager and Hall-of-Fame second baseman Napoleon Lajoie, from 1910 to 1922, and, among other notable 'firsts,' was the first batter to face a pitcher named Babe Ruth, and the first batter to get a hit against the Babe. He was also the first, and probably the only, player to adopt a dog, a bull terrier named Larry, after the dog was won by the team's trainer on a bet with a hotel bellhop prior to the 1912 spring training season. Larry becomes the team's mascot, sits in the dugout and travels with the players, safely tucked away in the train's baggage car. Larry's endearing antics, coinciding with the Naps slow progression out of the second division, will amuse young readers, and delight readers of any age who savor authentic accounts of baseball history. The story is not without some melancholy, but in the end smiles abound.
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Format: Paperback
This endearing story tells of the love affair between a team and its mascot, a man and his dog, and the early Cleveland major league team's climb out of the cellar in search of a pennant and the ultimate baseball prize. Gregorich combines a considerable knowledge of baseball--its history and how it is played--with an enviable ability to turn a poetic phrase. And you won't soon forget the larger-than-life antics of Larry the dog--cute, funny, and oh-so-smart. A book that really is suitable for kids and adults, and perfect for reading aloud.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I bought this book for a nine-year-old relative who loves sports and dogs--my whole family are great dog enthusiasts and all but me are crazy for sports. At the same time I ordered the gift copy, I bought one for myself. As I said before, I am not a huge baseball fan, but I am married to one. In the interest of a strong partnership, I have shared his enjoyment over the years and know the score. He on the other hand has a great fear of dogs, but he has always compromised when visiting my relatives and accepted their pets with graciousness. I loved this heartfelt tale of winning and losing, true team spirit, trust, loyalty and love. I laughed, I cried and wished I could play leapdog with Larry. I enjoyed reading about good hoppers and bad hoppers and had to pinch myself with the impressiveness of the free verse form.

I loved Jack's introduction to Larry: "The unexpected jumps at Jack, then zooms away. The four-footed black and white bullet races across the outfield, scatters dust through the infield, bumps into the backstop, and stands there panting. I laughed when I imagined myself being with Jack as we watched Larry "hurl himself against sweaty shoes and socks in ecstasy."

My favorite chapter was 'Frenzy.' I have felt just like Larry--particularly recently. It is comforting and perhaps humbling to know one has so much in common with a dog. My second favorite was 'Taking Care of Business.' I hope I am as well liked and resourceful as this bull terrier. I will often think about Larry teaching his team to trash talk in 'Dog Gone.' Consequently, the next time I read Ginsberg's 'Howl,' I will do so with an entirely new perspective. Being from Chicago, I even got the joke in the chapter "Goat' and the irony of 'Say it Ain't So.
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Format: Paperback
I read Jack and Larry over the Memorial Day weekend. It has been pulling at my heart strings ever since. Two powerful things come together in the pages of this book: the inspirational joys of having a hero AND the essential need for chemistry among the entire team. When these two things come together, history is made! I recommend this book to every baseball fan, dog lover, and anyone who believes you should not give up when going after your dreams.
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I totally enjoyed "Jack and Larry." Not only is it a great story, but the author's use of free verse makes it an easy and engaging read. Gregorich draws many parallels between the growing friendship of Jack and Larry, and the growing success of the Cleveland baseball team. She has a wonderful facility with language, using similes and metaphors that often made me laugh. The imagery of her writing is strong, and the reader is left at the end of the story feeling a personal relationship with the characters, especially Larry.
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