In this striking picture book biography, an old-timer tells us what made Sandy Koufax such an amazing baseball player. We learn that the beginning of his career with the Brooklyn Dodgers was rocky, that he was shy with his teammates, and experienced discrimination as one of the only Jews in the game. We hear that he actually quit, only to return the next season—different—firing one rocket after another over the plate. We watch him refuse to play in the 1965 World Series because it is a Jewish high holy day. And we see him in pain because of an overused left arm, eventually retiring at the peak of his career. Finally, we are told that people are still “scratchin’ their heads over Sandy,” who remains a modest hero and a mystery to this day.
Accompanied by sidebars filled with statistics, this Parents Magazine Best Book of the Year and Booklist Top of the List is sure to delight budding baseball fans.
Starred Review, Booklist, December 15, 2008:
“Hand this book to kids unconvinced by Koufax’s mind-boggling numbers, or to the ones who know why they’re so mind boggling to begin with.”
Starred Review, Publishers Weekly, January 5, 2009:
"Not just a home run, this book is a grand slam."
Starred Review, School Library Journal, February 2009:
“This striking book deserves a wide audience.”
WINNER 2010 - ALA Notable Children's Book
HONOR 2010 - Sydney Taylor Book Award, Association of Jewish Libraries
WINNER 2010 - NCSS/CBC Notable Children's Trade Books in the Field of Social Studies
WINNER 2010 - Cooperative Children's Book Center Choices
WINNER 2009 - Parents Magazine Prize
WINNER 2009 - Kirkus Reviews Best Childrens Books
WINNER 2009 - Booklist Children's Editors' Choice
WINNER 2009 - Booklist Top of the List
WINNER - New York Public Library 100 Titles for Reading and Sharing
WINNER - IRA--CBC Children's Choice
NOMINEE - North Dakota Flicker Tale Children's Book Award
NOMINEE - Pennsylvania Young Readers Choice Award
Jonah Winter is the author of Muhammed Ali: Champion of the World, Roberto Clemente, and Dizzy. He lives in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.
André Carrilho is the illustrator of Porch Lies by Patricia McKissack, which received three starred reviews. This is his first picture book. He lives in Lisbon, Portugal.