Summer reading list

Summer reading list

Posted by Bruce on Wed, 05/28/2008 - 12:13
Let's throw another log on the fire and relax with some summer reading, baseball style. Fireplaces and summer seem a little incongruous unless you were out at Wrigley Field last night for the Cubs-Dodgers game, which featured a wind chill of 35. Anyway, I've got a couple of great books for you. My favorite is "Classic Cubs: A Tribute to the Men and Magic of Wrigley Field." This 186-page book features the artwork of John Hanley of Crystal Lake, with text by my colleague Chris De Luca of the Chicago Sun-Times. This book is stunningly beautiful. Hanley's 125 oil paintings and drawings feature Cubs greats and wonderful renditions of Wrigley Field and its surroundings. Longtime Cubs fans will love the section on the team's broadcasters, going all the way back to Hal Totten and featuring the great Jack Quinlan, Jack Brickhouse, Vince and Lou, and, of course Harry Caray. Pat Hughes, who penned an introduction to the book, is featured, along with one of his infamous sweaters. Pat's broadcast partner, Ron Santo, gets his due as player and broadcaster, and you've got to see how Hanley handled Ronny's burning toupee. Classic. The Chicago Bears, who made Wrigley their home through 1970, also get nice artistic treatment. De Luca provides just the right amount of copy to keep you moving through the book, although you'll want to stop and admire the artwork for minutes on end. It's all there, from the Lou Brock trade to the College of Coaches to the "Sandberg Game" to a special treatment of Game 6 of the 2003 NLCS. I give this book my highest recommendation. The other book I like is "The Perfect Game," by Richard Bradley, who takes a unique look at the one-game tiebreaker between the Red Sox and Yankees in 1978. Bradley goes inning by inning through this epic game. Along the way, we get a different look at the personal life of Yankees hero Bucky Dent. Current Cubs manager Lou Piniella gains much mention for his heady play in right field. You'll come away feeling empathy for both sides in this book. Still to be reviewed: "Spoke: A Biography of Tris Speaker," by Charles C. Alexander. Happy reading.
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