This illustrated children’s book explains how the Chicago Cubs finally broke the 108-year drought that kept them from winning the World Series.
A billy goat, a disgruntled fan, and a curse: these are the intriguing ingredients of a baseball legend. Told in rhyming verse and depicted in comic book–style graphics, this story tells how fans in 1945, remembering their team’s 1908 win, hoped the Cubs would capture another World Series trophy. But during Game 4, a man who’d brought his smelly goat to watch the game got himself kicked out: “ ‘You will never win again!’ the man proclaimed aloud, / and thus ‘The Curse of the Billy Goat’ fell over the crowd”—or more important, the Cubs. Moving ahead to 2016, the tale details the road to the pennant and the Cubs’ Series win, noting individual contributions by players, the coach, and management. Attinella (Greatest Ever, 2017, etc.) employs lively verse to add emotion to the story. Though his scansion isn’t perfect, he conveys the building excitement as the Cubs inch closer to breaking the curse. The author writes knowledgeably about the team and the game; a gracious touch that fans should appreciate is the volume’s dedication to Cubs fan Steve Bartman. Pascale (Bru-Hed’s Guide to Gettin’ Girls NOW! Vol. 1, 2009, etc.) draws well, with his style mixing realism and cartoon elements. The artwork adds detail, humor, and drama, as in the bottom-up perspective of a player, giving him giantlike dimensions.
Entertaining and informative—a rousing choice for young baseball fans.