SILENT STAR by Bill Wise


The Story of Deaf Major Leaguer William Hoy
by & illustrated by
Age Range: 6 - 12
Email this review


At a time when deaf people were routinely called “Dummy,” William Hoy accepted and owned the nickname proudly.

He had become deaf as a result of meningitis and endured loneliness and isolation before attending a school for the deaf, learning American Sign Language and joining the school baseball team. Starting on an amateur team and moving into professional baseball in the minor leagues, he used ingenuity and acute observation to overcome difficulties in following umpires’ calls and to anticipate possible plays in every situation. He played for 14 years with several major league teams, racking up solid statistics and several fielding records. Fans tossed confetti and waved arms, hats and handkerchiefs to let him know that they were cheering for him. When he faced a deaf pitcher in a historic game in 1902, each signed recognition of the other’s remarkable achievements. Employing rich descriptive language with just the right combination of drama and information, Wise emphasizes Hoy’s steadfastness and determination in his baseball exploits and in every endeavor before and after his career. Gustavson’s sharply detailed illustrations, rendered in oil on paper, follow the text faithfully and offer glimpses into the look and feel of life and baseball in the19th century. Line sketches of baseball action and hand signals fill the endpapers.

A fascinating introduction to a little-known hero. (author’s note, sources, afterward) (Picture book/biography.6-12)

Pub Date: April 1st, 2012
ISBN: 978-1-60060-411-9
Page count: 40pp
Publisher: Lee & Low
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: March 15th, 2012



ChildrenWHEN JACKIE AND HANK MET by Mark Elliott
by Cathy Goldberg Fishman
ChildrenTHE BIG CARROT/DIE GROOT WORTEL by Ancri Swanepoel
by Ancri Swanepoel
Children¡BÉISBOL! by Jonah Winter
by Jonah Winter