book review, Cal Ripken Jr, Children's Books, Children's Writing, Kevin Cowherd, Nora Raleigh Baskin, Out at Home, Ruby on the Outside, San Francisco Book Review

Out at Home — Review and Giveaway

Thought for the Day:
“Anyone who writes down to children is simply wasting his time. You have to write up, not down. Children are demanding. They are the most attentive, curious, eager, observant, sensitive, quick, and generally congenial readers on earth. They accept, almost without question, anything you present them with, as long as it is presented honestly, fearlessly, and clearly.”
~ E.B. White ~
Gifts for My Writer Friends:
The GROG post HERE is great for those of us who need to cut words. That would probably be all of us. 
Janice Hardy has a great post HERE on Setups — good and bad — and infodumps. It’s terrific. 

Bryan Collins has a terrific post on The Wicked Writing blog with 7 Tips for Starting Your Story with a Bang. Check it out HERE.


Last week, I promised a gently-read hardback copy of Ruby on the Outside by Nora Raleigh Baskin to one of you. This week’s winner is Greg Partridge. Congratulations, Greg! If you don’t know Greg, please check out his wonderful blog, Always in the Middle, HERE. Greg is a middle-grade teacher, reader, and writer and always has something interesting on his blog. Greg, I will get the book out to you this week. Worry not. I have another giveaway for you this week.

It has been another all baseball weekend. Yesterday our grandson’s team had one win and one (close) loss. Today they played THREE games to end up coming

up a little short in the championship game. It was really exciting the whole way, but tired I am. If you see a typo or two, please understand. In honor of all that baseball, This week I’d like to tell you about a book in Cal Ripken, Jr’s All Stars series, Out at Home. This series is written by Ripken and Kevin Cowherd, a sportswriter. I reviewed one of the other books in the series, Squeeze Play, HERE. Here is the review I wrote for the San Francisco Book Review

Mickey Labriogla may be the coach’s kid, but he has earned his spot as catcher with his solid play behind the dish. He knows how to call the game, his arm is strong and accurate, and he is tough enough to block the plate against anyone. When the Orioles, having a great season, have their pitcher go down to injury, it seems the season may be lost. But when Coach brings in a pitcher who throws hard and fast and hits his spots, it seems their prayers are answered—until the team gets a whiff of the new pitcher’s arrogance. He calls himself Zoom, insists on calling his own pitches, shows up late, and more, and Coach turns a blind eye. When the team finds itself in a championship game against Zoom’s former team, things get really interesting.
“Zoom stalked around the mound for moment, trying to compose himself. The Orioles could tell he was furious. So could the next batter for the Rays, who dug in nervously, then quickly stepped out, took a deep breath, and dug in again.”

This is the fifth book in the middle-grade series written by Cal Ripken, Jr. and
Cal Ripken, Jr. 

former sports writer Kevin Cowherd. Each book stands completely on its own, focusing on a different member of the team. The writing is excellent, the story compelling, and everything about it is believable. Young baseball fans will love this as well as the rest of the series.

I have a very gently-read hardback copy for one of you. To win, all you need do is have a US address, be a subscriber or follower, and tell me that in a comment you leave on this post. If you are reading this in your email, click HERE to go to the blog so you can leave a comment. If you would like extra chances, please spread the word by posting the link on a Tweet, blog post, Facebook, or any other way you like. Let me know what you have done in your comment, and I will put in extra chances for you for each

Kevin Cowherd

that you do.

Don’t forget to check out Shannon Messenger’s wonderful blog HERE for many more Marvelous Middle-Grade Monday reviews and giveaways.

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