Baseball in April and Other Stories
Baseball in April and Other Stories

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Annotation: A collection of eleven short stories focusing on the everyday adventures of Hispanic young people growing up in Fresno, California.
Genre: Short stories
Catalog Number: #23176
Format: Perma-Bound Edition
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Publisher: Harcourt
Copyright Date: 1990
Edition Date: 1990
Pages: 111 pages
Availability: Available
ISBN: Publisher: 0-15-202567-7 Perma-Bound: 0-7804-3752-7
ISBN 13: Publisher: 978-0-15-202567-0 Perma-Bound: 978-0-7804-3752-4
Dewey: Fic
LCCN: 91002426
Dimensions: 20 cm.
Language: English
Reviews:
Horn Book
Soto is an astute observer of the desires, fears, and foibles of children and teenagers going about the business of daily living. In these eleven vignettes featuring Mexican-American families, the character portrayals are gentle; the tone is quiet and somewhat bittersweet; and respect for family is a consistent value. This illumination of the everyday will strike chords of recognition in readers of all ages. Glos.
Publishers Weekly
Diaz and Gongora give Soto's heartfelt collection just the right spark of Latino flavor in this sharp audio production. From Jesse, a nine-year-old struggling to improve his baseball skills in """"Baseball in April"""" to Veronica, who is crushed when her new, much cherished Barbie doll is ruined, Soto introduces vivid characters who struggle with the longing, hope and acceptance that are part of everyday life. Soto's accessible writing voice and poetic language permeate these 11 tales of first dates, worries about one's looks and the difficulties of dealing with idiosyncratic family members. With the help of solid performances (and crisp pronunciation of the smattering of Spanish words and phrases) by Diaz and Gongora, listeners will take away a real sense of what it was like for many Mexican-American kids growing up in California's Central Valley (including Fresno, Soto's hometown) not so many years ago. Ages 10-up. (Jan.)
School Library Journal
Gr 4 Up- Gary Soto writes about the universal concerns of children and teens in the context of his Latino background in this recording of Baseball in April and Other Stories (Harcourt 1990). With uncomplicated vocabulary but nuanced meaning, these stories cover sports, music, family life and boy-girl relationships with humor and sensitivity. The title story looks at one boy's desire to be part of a team that later disappoints him. Other stories in this award-winning book tell about a boy trying to help his grandfather buy a dream house, a timid boy who takes karate lessons, and a girl who is woebegone when her precious Barbie doll is damaged. The 11 contemporary stories are set in California's Central Valley. The brief selections are ideal for classroom use as well as for listeners with short attention spans. The enthusiastic narration by Stephanie Diaz and Miguel Gongora is done with just the right tempo. They also enhance the tales by singing and sobbing as the story demands. Story titles are marked directly on the cassettes but not on the case. Focused on issues such as acceptance and self worth, this recording could be coupled with longer novels on similar subjects. These short stories are well suited to the audio format and will be an enriching addition to audio collections.-Barbara Wysocki, Cora J. Belden Library, Rocky Hill, CT Copyright 2000 Cahners Business Information.
Word Count: 27,521
Reading Level: 5.1
Interest Level: 7-12
Accelerated Reader: reading level: 5.1 / points: 4.0 / quiz: 5931 / grade: Middle Grades
Reading Counts!: reading level:5.8 / points:6.0 / quiz:Q00927
Lexile: 830L
Guided Reading Level: U
Fountas & Pinnell: U

The Mexican American author Gary Soto draws on his own experience of growing up in California's Central Valley in this finely crafted collection of eleven short stories that reveal big themes in the small events of daily life. Crooked teeth, ponytailed girls, embarrassing grandfathers, imposter Barbies, annoying brothers, Little League tryouts, and karate lessons weave the colorful fabric of Soto's world. The smart, tough, vulnerable kids in these stories are Latino, but their dreams and desires belong to all of us. Glossary of Spanish terms included. Awards: ALA Best Book for Young Adults, Booklist Editors' Choice, Horn Book Fanfare Selection, Judy Lopez Memorial Honor Book, Parenting Magazine's Reading Magic Award, John and Patricia Beatty Award

Broken chain
Baseball in April
Two dreamers
Barbie
The no-guitar blues
Seventh grade
Mother and daughter
The karate kid
La bamba
The marble champ
Growing up.

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