CM . . .
. Volume XII Number 15 . . . . March 31, 2006
Take Me Out of the Ball Game is a collection of short humorous essays. The 50 stories in this anthology have been published previously in the following publications: Stitches, the Journal of Medical Humour, Gilbert Magazine, Western People, The Toronto Star, The Globe and Mail, Western Report, Canadian Author, The Calgary Herald, The Ottawa Citizen and have also been heard on CBC Saskatchewan.
Campbell takes a light, humorous look at topics as far ranging as: "Writers vs Editors," "How Jazz Began," "A Patient's Lament," "Law and Literature," "Take a Bus," "Hooked on Golf," "The Irish Connection," "Under the Weather and Over the Hill," and most of the pieces take a Canadian slant to the topic. Many of the essays target social issues, such as language or senior citizens; others take a strictly off-the-wall approach to topics as diverse as the weather or European toilets.
The humour can be very subtle, satirical, or laugh-out-loud, and the reader will come across not just a few groaners. The writing is gentle and literate and should appeal to anyone who likes to follow the topical humour columns or light articles that are often found in their local newspapers. These tales are a quick and easy read, even though the content, itself, may be thought-provoking. The essays are short, with twenty-four taking up only three pages, eighteen essays have four pages and six up to five pages. The longest essay is only nine pages long; the shortest takes up two.
The author's claim to be able to write on such diverse material comes from what the book cover describes as his experiences as a writer, editor, musician, tourist, failed athlete, husband, parent, and "somewhat bemused observer." He makes good use of all of these talents while dissecting his chosen topics.
Take Me Out of the Ball Game would make a good "cottage" or "beach" read, or a book to take along on a long airplane or bus trip. You can set it down and pick it up again quite easily. Take Me Out of the Ball Game should appeal to a broad range of reader as there is something here to amuse young and old alike.
Ronald J. Hore, involved with the Canadian Author's Association and writer's workshops for several years, retired from the business world in Winnipeg, MB.
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Copyright © the Manitoba Library Association. Reproduction for personal use is permitted only if this copyright notice is maintained. Any other reproduction is prohibited without permission.