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CATCHING THE MOON by Crystal Hubbard


The Story of a Young Girl’s Baseball Dream

by Crystal Hubbard & illustrated by Randy DuBurke

Age Range: 6 - 10

Pub Date: Sept. 1st, 2005
ISBN: 1-58430-243-7
Publisher: Lee & Low

Marcenia Lyle wants to be a professional baseball player. But as an African-American female in the 1930s, she has many strikes against her. Her parents are loving, but realistic about her limited options. When the St. Louis Cardinals manager Gabby Street forms a boys’ baseball day camp, he refuses to consider allowing her to join. However, Marcenia dazzles him with her daring and skill until he agrees to let her join and even supplies the baseball shoes she lacks. Hubbard ends the account at that point. Choosing to present a vignette, a small moment, can be effective, but here Hubbard leaves the reader hanging and it’s not until the afterword that the reader learns the facts of Marcenia’s real life as the first female player on a professional baseball team. While Duburke’s acrylic illustrations beautifully enhance the text, this format just does not seem the right choice for Marcenia’s story, one that could have been better told as a picture-book biography. (Picture book. 6-10)