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Henry Aaron's Dream    by Matt Tavares order for
Henry Aaron's Dream
by Matt Tavares
Order:  USA  Can
Candlewick, 2010 (2010)

Read an Excerpt

* * *   Reviewed by Bob Walch

You probably have heard of me. My name is Henry Aaron, although many people referred to me as Hammerin' Hank. In this picture book you'll learn about my early days as a baseball player.

The story begins when I was a child growing up in Mobile, Alabama. Since my family didn't have a lot of money, I used a broom handle or a stick for a bat and I'd hit bottle caps or tie rags together or crumple up an old tin can and pretend it was a ball.

Since there was still segregation in the country in the 1940s when I was young, almost all the public baseball diamonds carried White Only signs. Luckily for me, Mobile did open Carver Park, a colored only facility, when I was twelve years old. That's where I spent all my free time and learned how to play the game.

When I saw Jackie Robinson play with the Dodgers, I realized that perhaps some day I could make it to the big leagues if I worked real hard. As you'll see when you read my story, I joined the semi-pro Mobile Black Bears in 1951 when I was still in high school. Soon I was picked up by the Indianapolis Clowns, a Negro League team, where I played until the Milwaukee Braves offered me a minor league contract. As the old saying goes, 'The rest is history!' Eventually I made it to the big leagues and actually played against my idol, Jackie Robinson.

If you are seven or eight years of age and like baseball, I bet you'll enjoy reading my story. The book's big, vibrant illustrations jump right off each page and you'll discover my lifetime baseball statistics are also included in this really cool picture book.

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