Monday, June 2, 2008

Jackie and Me

Jackie & Me

by Dan Gutman (1999)

let's teach racial tolerance by being poor sports!

Ok, too harsh. Especially for a book about one of my personal heroes, and a mighty fine ballplayer too. Our time-traveling protagonist goes back to 1947, changes skin color, and learns first-hand about racial inequality and bigotry. Quick, exciting plot, lots to discuss. But as a father and coach I cringe over the blatant unsportsman-like taunting, mocking, and fighting at a Little League baseball game... it's one thing to have Robinson the professional athlete being aggressive in a World Series game, but not a kid who supposedly learned something from Robinson's self-respect and dignity. But still, good book.

connections: Time Warp Trio, Year of the Boar..., Negro League baseball, Jackie Robinson biographies...


Jenni said...

So let me guess, you really loved this book! You think I should go out and get it?

JK said...

Well, I didn't exactly finish, those were just my initial thoughts after closing the book... I'm a big JR fan and hope to use him in future lessons, and I feel the book failed somewhat along those lines -- it leaves the reader with the taunting "me first" method of success, instead of with being strong with a larger sense of purpose.

Jenni said...

Thanks for clarifying. I will definitely have to read it before giving it to an interested child in order to fully understand the "me first".