Columbus Slaughters Braves by Mark Friedman

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Joe Columbus is an ordinary man: schoolteacher, husband, father-to-be. His younger brother, CJ, however, is anything but ordinary: the Chicago Cubs' star third baseman, a baseball hero, destined for greatness.
In a voice both humorous and plaintive, Joe tells of his brother's remarkable ascent from the sandlots of their southern California childhood to the ivy-walled shrine of Wrigley Field, in an effort to explain not only CJ's apparently charmed life but also his own missteps and failures -- his collapsing marriage, his envy and cowardice, and a rift between brothers that is healed only by tragedy.
Mark Friedman's first novel is the heartbreaking tale of two brothers whose lives lead to vastly different fates. A richly imagined story that explores both the grand and enduring allure of our national pasttime and the complications of our lives -- our longings, losses, and regrets -- COLUMBUS SLAUGHTERS BRAVES is for anyone who has had a hero or wanted to be one. Like W. P. Kinsella's SHOELESS JOE and Richard Ford's THE SPORTSWRITER, this is a compassionate but honest novel that introduces readers to a gifted and extraordinarily perceptive writer.

About Mark Friedman

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Mark Friedman studied writing at Johns Hopkins University and lives in Baltimore, Maryland.
Published January 1, 2001 by Houghton Mifflin. 224 pages
Genres: Sports & Outdoors, Literature & Fiction. Fiction

Unrated Critic Reviews for Columbus Slaughters Braves

Publishers Weekly

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An older brother's fleeting superiority gives way to destructive resentment as his younger brother rises to stardom in this poignant, darkly comic tale of family politics, denial, self-knowledge, destiny and baseball.

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AV Club

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When Friedman drops a medical-crisis plot twist into the final 50 pages, Columbus Slaughters Braves backs up to the wall of the maudlin, "Now I know what life's really about" message that provides the spine of too many Tuesdays With Morrie variants.

Apr 19 2002 | Read Full Review of Columbus Slaughters Braves

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