By: Julianna Baggott
In The Prince of Fenway Park, Baggott (also known as N.E. Bode) takes a whimsical look at the fabled Curse, which legend has it began in 1919 with the sale of Babe Ruth to the New York Yankees, and brings the reader into a fantastical world set in - and underneath - Fenway Park. The story’s protagonist is a twelve-year old biracial orphan named Oscar Egg who was adopted by white parents. His parents are divorced, and he lives with his mother. When circumstances force Oscar to go to live with his elusive father, he must reveal his secret to Oscar: the Red Sox are indeed cursed, and he is one of the Cursed Creatures who lives in Fenway Park.
Oscar soon discovers that he possesses a gift that may allow him to break The Curse so that his beloved Red Sox can win the World Series and reunite his parents. Yet if he fails, he is doomed to live all his days among the Cursed Creatures.
The novel takes the reader seamlessly back in forth between events, locations, and people that are both real and imagined. The story honestly recalls painful moments in Red Sox history, such as Jackie Robinson’s tryout at Fenway Park, as well as joyous moments, including David Ortiz’s game-winning home run in Game 4 of the 2004 American League Championship Series. Borrowing heavily from Irish Folklore, the Cursed Creatures include a banshee, a Pooka, conjoined radio announcers and many more outlandish creatures. Other characters that figure prominently in the book include Johnny Pesky, Pumpsie Green, Bill Buckner, Boston City Councilor Izzy Muchnick, and of course, Babe Ruth – like Oscar, an orphan who found his calling in baseball.
At its heart, The Prince of Fenway Park is a story about fathers, sons, and baseball – a chord that resonates through generations of Red Sox fans. The story is perfect for fans of sports, adventure, fantasy, history, and every combination thereof. Kirkus Reviews has high praise for The Prince of Fenway Park calling it, “Richly imagined… a thoroughly involving tale.”
The Prince of Fenway Park—By Julianna Baggott
Hc: 9780060872427 / $16.99
Lb: 9780060872434 / $17.89
March 24, 2009 Ages: 8 - 12