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CAMPY by David A. Adler


The Story of Roy Campanella

by David A. Adler & illustrated by Gordon C. James

Age Range: 7 - 10

Pub Date: March 1st, 2007
ISBN: 0-670-06041-0
Publisher: Viking

Roy Campanella was a beloved catcher for the Brooklyn Dodgers. When they announced their plan to move to Los Angeles after the 1957 season, he had every intention of going with them. But during the winter off-season, he was severely injured in a car crash. He never played baseball or walked again. Adler provides all the salient biographical information, including the little-known fact that Branch Rickey hired Jackie Robinson and Campanella as part of the same plan to integrate baseball. But the stress is on Campy’s warm, loving spirit and his inspirational determination to live his life fully and without complaint. James’s compelling oils present a beautifully lit, softly focused view of the events. The only caveat is that Campanella’s facial features differ in nearly every illustration, and most don’t resemble the real man. This might be somewhat jarring to adults who remember Campy, but probably won’t affect young readers. There has been little written about Campanella in recent years, but Adler fills that void admirably. (Picture book/biography. 7-10)