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DAD, JACKIE, AND ME by Myron Uhlberg


by Myron Uhlberg & illustrated by Colin Bootman

Age Range: 7 - 10

Pub Date: March 1st, 2005
ISBN: 1-56145-329-3
Publisher: Peachtree

When Jackie Robinson signs with the Brooklyn Dodgers in 1947 as first baseman, the historic event captures the imagination of one middle-aged man in Brooklyn—the author’s father. This genuinely affecting, fictionalized story reveals how Uhlberg’s father, who is deaf, personally relates to the first African-American player in major league baseball as someone who also has to overcome discrimination. The shared excitement of father and son during a Giants vs. Dodgers game at Ebbets Field is contagious, as readers experience the tension of the game as well as that generated by racist Giants fans. The boy’s embarrassment as his father chants Jackie’s name as “AH-GHEE, AH-GEE, AH-GEE!” vanishes by the season’s last game when Robinson throws the ball straight to his father and, amazingly, he catches it in his bare hand. Bootman’s realistic, wonderfully expressive watercolor paintings capture the fashions and flavor of 1940s New York in muted browns and greens. The endpapers, an actual scrapbook of old newspaper articles about Robinson, provide a satisfying context for this ultimately upbeat, multi-dimensional story. (author’s note) (Picture book. 7-10)