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Monday, November 9, 2015

The Legend of Mickey Tussler-- Reading The First Book in a Series Second

I just finished the first book about fictional autistic pitcher, Mickey Tussler.  This brings my total of baseball novels read in 2015 to three.  I thought that the cover showing a ball in a mitt illustrates the role of the catcher in Mickey’s development into an extraordinary pitcher.    The rapport that Boxcar, the Brewers’ catcher, develops with Mickey is integral to the story of Mickey’s success.

 I read the sequel to this book, Sophomore Campaign, before this one and reviewed it here . I was interested enough in the characters to want to know more about their backgrounds.  So I purchased it from Amazon and reviewed it for Bookplex.  

 Author Frank Nappi wisely left some things for me to discover in The Legend of Mickey Tussler that weren’t mentioned in the second book.  I didn’t feel that I already knew the entire plotline and all the information about the past of the characters.  I was surprised at several points while reading The Legend of Mickey Tussler.

I was most astonished by Molly, Mickey’s Mom.  I understood her and identified with her because of what was revealed about Molly in The Legend of Mickey Tussler.   Reading this book also caused me to appreciate how much she grew in the sequel. 

The author’s style was another reason to read the first Mickey Tussler book.   I was convinced that I’d find some passages that were noteworthy for their elegance as I did in Sophomore Campaign.    This turned out to be a correct assumption.   Nappi is a class act, and the editing is also a winner.  I only found one typographical error, but many more instances of lovely prose.

Yet the one haunting passage that I recorded in my book journal runs counter to the philosophy of Sophomore Campaign that prejudice can be overcome.  So The Legend of Mickey Tussler is a darker book than the sequel.   Both the tone and the resolution are darker.   I concluded that Nappi continued writing about Mickey to give us more hope for him, and all those who have been victimized by prejudice.  


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