Samurai Shortstop by Alan Gratz
(Junior Library Guild Selection (Dial))

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Tokyo, 1890. Toyo is caught up in the competitive world of boarding school, and must prove himself to make the team in a new sport called besuboru. But he grieves for his uncle, a samurai who sacrificed himself for his beliefs, at a time when most of Japan is eager to shed ancient traditions. It?s only when his father decides to teach him the way of the samurai that Toyo grows to better understand his uncle and father. And to his surprise, the warrior training guides him to excel at baseball, a sport his father despises as yet another modern Western menace. Toyo searches desperately for a way to prove there is a place for his family?s samurai values in modern Japan. Baseball might just be the answer, but will his father ever accept a ?Western? game that stands for everything he despises?


About Alan Gratz

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Alan Gratz's ( Samurai Shortstop was named one of Booklist's Top Ten Sports Books for Youth and Booklist Top Ten Debut Novels for Youth, as well as being named one of ALA's Top Ten Best Books for Young Adults. The Brooklyn Nine was one of Booklist's Top Ten Sports Books for Youth. He lives in Bakersville, North Carolina.
Published February 14, 2008 by Speak. 292 pages
Genres: Young Adult, Sports & Outdoors, Children's Books, Literature & Fiction, Travel. Fiction

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Kirkus Reviews

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Out of this clash of cultures comes this story of 16-year-old Toyo, making his way in an elite boarding school, trying to get over the ritual suicide of his old samurai Uncle Koji, fearing his father may be next and eventually seeing baseball as a way to meld East and West, traditional samurai va...

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Publishers Weekly

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Though Toyo finds a way to use the samurai values his father has taught him, his leadership skills don't develop enough for him to protest or withdraw from aiding the enforcement of a brutal punishment against a boy who has strayed from Ichiko's harsh rules, undermining the sympathy readers may h...

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