♥ Book Title : Fathers, Sons, and the Holy Ghosts of Baseball
☯ Full Synopsis : ""Time often slows and frequently even stops in the small town of Cottage Park, Iowa. In fact, time is best measured not by the hands of a clock but by the innings in a baseball game. Praying and playing baseball are two of the town's primary activites. Actually, they are one in the same in a town where baseball is a religion. Still, time does eventually flow on. Much like the Des Moines River just outside Cottage Park, time also leads to Des Moines, the site of the 1974 Iowa high school baseball tournament. Cottage Park's Holy Trinity High School has never won the Finals, as they are known. The team's three elderly coaches vow to at last anoint themselves Finals champions before they retire in their final season. For the players, the road to the Finals is a confirmation by fire -- a rite of passage before they must face adulthood looming before them. Fathers, sons, and the holy ghosts of baseball join together in the quest for the Finals. Along this yourney, young and old alike ultimately learn that you must sacrifice before you can gain and sometimes lose before you can win."--Back cover."Article| Tommy Murray| Statement ..."
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♥ Book Title : Fathers, Sons, & Holy Ghosts
☯ Full Synopsis : "No other sport, and indeed few other activities evoke as much passion as does baseball. It is a passion that unites generations and genders, laborers and lawyers, Republicans and Democrats. Baseball serves as a common language, a unified way of perceiving the world, a means to greater understanding. Baseball's shrines, rituals, myths, and heroes certainly give it a religious aura, but many activities may be pursued "religiously." Baseball is beyond religion. It is a living myth that puts us in touch with Eternity, with the Infinite. Its Miracle is not some long-ago act that contradicts the laws of physics. Its Miracle is the scrubbing away of cynicism to reveal the fresh-faced child within who is ready to believe, eager to believe, who does believe. Fathers, Sons, & Holy Ghosts: Baseball as a Spiritual Experience is an examination in memoir form of how baseball nourishes the spiritual side of those who are part of the game."Article| Austin Gisriel| Statement ..."
♥ Book Title : My Name is Jozef Bednarz: Memoir of a WWII POW
☯ Full Synopsis : "Is this really happening? Seventeen-year-old Jozef Benarz stands quietly in his parents’ living room in Brzesciany, Poland, listening to the angry Nazi soldiers telling his parents they are going to take his father away to a forced labor camp in Germany. He knows in his heart the aging abusive father who raised him will not survive imprisonment during WWII. He tells the frightful men they can take him instead of his dad, much to his mother’s horror of possibly losing her oldest child. From that day on, his life will never be the same. He will endure inhumane and degrading treatment at the hands of the Nazi Gestapo. Bombs will explode near him and he will see lives disappear before his young eyes. Before his ordeal is over, he will be sent to the front lines as a human shield to protect the men who have tortured him in many ways. Prayer in God will eventually bring him through the hardest days of his life. One day he will be free and go to America and his dreams will become a reality."Article| Katherine Ritchie| Statement ..."
♥ Book Title : Last Words of the Holy Ghost
☯ Full Synopsis : "Funny, heartbreaking, and real—these twelve stories showcase a dynamic range of voices belonging to characters who can't stop confessing. They are obsessive storytellers, disturbed professors, depressed auctioneers, gambling clergy. A fourteen-year-old boy gets baptized and speaks in tongues to win the love of a girl who ushers him into adulthood; a troubled insomniac searches the woods behind his mother's house for the "awful pretty" singing that begins each midnight; a school-system employee plans a year-end party at the site of a child's drowning; a burned-out health-care administrator retires from New England to coastal Georgia and stumbles upon a life-changing moment inside Walmart. These big-hearted people—tethered to the places that shape them—survive their daily sorrows and absurdities with well-timed laughter; they slouch toward forgiveness, and they point their ears toward the Holy Ghost's last words."Article| Matt Cashion| Statement ..."
♥ Book Title : The Chicken Runs at Midnight
☯ Full Synopsis : "Rich Donnelly was a minor league catcher who never quite got the chance to play in the big leagues. So he became obsessed with reaching the Major Leagues as a coach. While climbing the ladder to his dream job as third base coach for the Pittsburgh Pirates, he became mostly an absentee father who was eventually divorced by his wife. Worse yet, he had a falling out with his only daughter, Amy, who was unafraid to tell her father where he fell short and how he could improve. Then it happened. In March of 1992, seventeen-year-old Amy called her dad to tell him she was going to have brain surgery. A tumor had been found. In October, Rich invited her to Game Five of the 1992 NLCS between the Pirates and the Atlanta Braves. That’s when an unlikely cheer was born. From the stands, Amy observed her dad yelling instructions to the runners on second base and jokingly asked him afterwards if he was telling them, “The chicken runs at midnight.” The saying stuck. In late January of 1993, Amy died, but not before her dad and her three brothers had let the battle cry be etched into their lives. It stood for never giving in. It stood for challenging your obstacles. It stood for Amy. Rich renewed his life of faith, speaking out for God and what he could do in a person’s life if the person paid attention. Four years later, in 1997, after Coach Donnelly had become third base coach for the Florida Marlins, he and his sons brought the battle cry of the chicken with them. That year, the Marlins reached the World Series against Cleveland, a classic that culminated with a seventh game that went extra innings. And the Marlins won that final game when a player nicknamed “Chicken” crossed home plate at exactly twelve midnight. The chicken had run at midnight. The Chicken Runs at Midnight will make you thrill to victory, believe in hope, stand up to cheer for what is good in peoples’ lives, and conclude that God can work in the life of any person, even through his mistakes, even when he’s not paying attention, even when he thinks it’s too late to turn around."Article| Tom Friend| Statement ..."
♥ Book Title : Line Drives
☯ Full Synopsis : "Poetry and baseball are occasions for well-put passion and expressive pondering, and just as passionate attention transforms the prose of everyday life into poetry, it also transforms this game we write about, play, or watch. Editors Brooke Horvath and Tim Wiles unite their own passion for baseball and poetry in this collection, Line Drives: 100 Contemporary Baseball Poems, providing a forum for ninety-two poets. Line after line - like baseball itself, game after game and season after season - these poems manage to make the old and the familiar new and surprising. Each poem delivers images of pure beauty as the poets speak of murder and ghost runners and old ball gloves, of baseball as a tie that binds families - and indeed the nation - together, of the game as a stage upon which no-nonsense grit and skill are routinely displayed, and of the delight experienced in being one amid a mindlessly happy crowd. This book is true to the game's long season and to the lives of those the game engages."Article| Brooke Horvath| Statement ..."
♥ Book Title : Sugarhouse
☯ Full Synopsis : ""'You're married, you're getting older, and your parents are looking more and more like the grandparents they are pestering you to make them. It's getting embarrassing. Your pathetic renter's mailbox--the one with three former tenants' names crossed out--is stuffed with your friends' baby shower invitations. Just a few months ago, right after my grandmother died, five different people mentioned the word Ultrasound to me on the same day. It was both onomatopoetic and devastating.' In the cruel, cruel summer of a recent year, this was the condition in which Matt Batt and his young wife, Jenae, found themselves. Transient residents of higher-education-inspired locations like Columbus, OH, Madison, WI, Boston, MA, and eventually St. Paul, MN, they were, quite unexpectedly, living, working and renting in Salt Lake City, UT. And when a vicious series of deaths in their respective, immediate families set their anxious sights on some semblance of stability, they landed upon a flamboyantly dilapidated house in the Sugarhouse section of Salt Lake. With a shaky young marriage and a full-blown 1/4 life crisis on their hands, these perpetual grad-students/waiters/non-profiteers with no homesteading experience whatsoever, decided they would turn this yellow former crack house into a home. Dizzy with despair, doubt and the side effects of using the rough equivalent of napalm to detoxify their house, Matt and Jenae found themselves fighting for their marriage, alternately dodging and accepting the burdens and joys of becoming fully committed adults, while trying to figure out how the hell a rented power sander works" --"Article| Matthew C. Batt| Statement ..."
♥ Book Title : The Natural
☯ Full Synopsis : "This is a book about heroism - of sorts. Roy Hobbs has an immense natural gift for playing baseball. He could become one of the great ones of the game, a player unmatched in his time - a hero. But his first hard-won big chance ends violently, at the hands of a crazy girl, and then it is years before he gets another shot. At last, in a few short seasons, or never, he must achieve the towering reputation that he feels is his right."Article| Bernard Malamud| Statement ..."
♥ Book Title : The Comic Flaw
☯ Full Synopsis : "From the cover: Berecka's commedia is not so much divine as it is deeply human-a retrospective poetic, accompanied by a wince and a grin. Scott Cairns Author of Compass of Affection: Poems New & Selected Alan Berecka probes his blue collar roots with honesty and insight, depicting, with haunting detail and striking imagery, everything from family members who "smell of cabbage and onions" to the love "that pins us down." Ranging in tone from the elegiac to the hilarious, these impressive poems shimmer with craftsmanship, the work of a poet who takes his art seriously, who works the jagged stones of his poems until they sparkle on the page like faceted gems. Larry D. Thomas 2008 Texas Poet Laureate The hardest task of a serious writer is to be able to write funny, but Alan Berecka not only does this, he does it brilliantly. These are laugh-out-loud funny poems on child abuse and alcoholism, profanity and prayer, via some of the most unlikely subjects: the Pope's T-shirt, the Beatles' appearance on the Ed Sullivan Show, Carl Yastrezmski, Jiffy Pop popcorn, Playboy magazine. These poems will both break your heart and alter your vision; I guarantee you will never look at the world in quite the same way again. Barbara Crooker Author, Line Dance and Radiance Berecka embraces the "flaw" without a hint of resignation-never hesitating to administer the sacrament of laughter where others might erect a wall of ridicule. This collection is a Eucharist, beginning to end. Bread and wine have their place; but the sacramental elements might just as well be baseball, popcorn, t-shirts, a puzzled Pope responding to a phrasebook reference to lost luggage-or the poet's old man flipping a bird. He has anuncanny ability to sense the presence of God in such acts, and that is a welcome invitation to take our shoes off and get comfortable on this holy ground we share. Steven Schroeder Virtual Artists Collective"Article| Alan Berecka| Statement ..."
♥ Book Title : A Hero Dreams
☯ Full Synopsis : "Devastated by his father's sudden death, eight-year-old Ricky begins to see things--a ghostly silhouette in his bedroom window, a gruesome train accident involving four local teenagers, a terrorist attack that won't occur for another twenty-five years. After a traumatic incident at a New England summer camp, the visions become more frequent, more vivid, and more disturbing. A mysterious voice assures him everything will be okay if he crosses the ''threshold.'' But just what is the threshold? And what lies beyond? An inspiring tale of hope, faith, courage, and profound self-discovery, ''A Hero Dreams'' takes the reader on an epic journey along the furthermost frontiers of human consciousness and into a miraculous realm where anything is possible."Article| Mark Ristau| Statement ..."
♥ Book Title : Strong Fathers, Strong Sons, Strong Men
☯ Full Synopsis : "Amazon's #1 Bestseller Strong Fathers, Strong Sons, Strong Men is a Powerful book for Fathers and Mothers whose desire is to raise their sons to grow up to be strong, well balanced, well rounded, well prepared Men, Husbands and Fathers. This book was written by a Father that knows the importance of strong fatherhood and the enormous impact that a father has in the life of a child and in the life of that child as he or she becomes an adult. This book was written as a guide to help fathers teach their sons valuable principles that they will need as they transition from a male to a man. Strong Fathers, Strong Sons, Strong Men gives an eye opening insight and a rare uninhibited firsthand perspective on what it means to be a man and the roles that fathers must play if they wish to raise healthy, happy and well adjusted sons who will eventually grow up to be well adjusted and fully prepared Men. Strong Fathers, Strong Sons, Strong Men will teach Fathers, Men and their sons the following: How to increase your Value as a Man, 5 Things your mother didn't tell you about women and how to become the type of Man that Women Really want and need, How to start a small business for $50 or less, How to set goals, How to live up to your potential and much much more. Strong Fathers, Strong Sons, Strong Men is designed to be a trusted and honest companion on the challenging and exciting road of Fatherhood and to help you in raising your son into a Man."Article| Calvin E. Clark, Sr.| Statement ..."
♥ Book Title : Holy Ghost Girl
☯ Full Synopsis : "Recounts the author's childhood as an organist's daughter for tent revivalist David Terrell, describing her witness to his mass "miracles" and his morally corrupt activities behind the scenes as well as the growing fame that transformed his broken-down caravan into a lucrative ministry before his illegal practices were exposed. 20,000 first printing."Article| Donna M. Johnson| Statement ..."