Volume 11 Number 5.
The author of The Wormbumers* and other young adult novels, John Craig convincingly combines historical information, adventure, and personal growth in this YA novel Ain't Looking'. It is 1939, the Depression, and our unemployed hero, Joe Giffen rides the rails west, carrying a change of clothes and his beloved baseball glove. During a stopover in a small town, he watches a famous coloured ball team, and is surprised by an offer to join them. Coating his skin with shoe polish, he plays ball for Chappie Johnson and his Coloured All-Stars.
Joe learns a lot about baseball, his team members, and the unwritten rules that restricted blacks in pre-war North America. It is a memorable summer and one that ends all too quickly. Britain's entry into war with Germany, and the team schedule to play in the southern United States contribute to Joe's decision to return home.
Ain't Lookin' is a sensitive, well-written novel. It is sparked with anecdotes, the occasional confrontation, and vivid detail of life on the baseball circuit. Extensive use of dialogue enhances its readability. Highly recommended.
*Reviewed vol.IV/3 Autumn 1976 p.126.
Donna O 'Connor, Martensville H. S., Martensville, SK.
1971-1979 | 1980-1985 | 1986-1990 | 1991-1995
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