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Wednesday, June 13, 2018

I GOT IT! by David Wiesner. Clarion Books, Houghton Mifflin Harcourt. Raincoast. 2018. $24.99 ages 5 and up


Here's the pitch ...

   then the fly to the outfield ...

      and the catch ... ?

Wait for it."

Here's another wordless book to add to that list you are keeping. Perfect for baseball season, and all those kids who love the game.

I have noticed that there are fewer pick up games in playgrounds and on ball fields each year. I'm not sure if that is because now there are organized teams and leagues for even the youngest ball players, or that kids are just not getting outside to play as they once did, or what. You know how we seniors talk about the old days when we were outside all day long, and pick up games were ongoing. I miss the sound of kids at play!

This book pays homage to the joys inherent in kids getting together to play a game of ball. A new boy, on his own, looks through the fence to where a group of ball players his age are preparing to get a game going. The organizing kid sends this unknown to the outfield where he soon has the chance to prove his worth. Wanting to prove his prowess, he faces the task with perseverance despite many imagined obstacles to success and meant to dampen his confidence. In the end, he does just what he says he will do: I GOT IT! Bravo!

Created in acrylic, gouache and watercolor, David Wiesner does what he has done in previous books that are equally intriguing. He paints a realistic scenario of one moment in time, and makes every stroke of the paintbrush meaningful, and mesmerizing. Kids who have played the game and made (or tried to make) such a play will immediately connect with everything about this superb new book.

The grownups who share it should be prepared for rereading, and for discussion concerning the many possibilities for what might have happened ... but, didn't!

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