Reviews for Honus & Me


Booklist Monthly Selections - #2 April 1997
Gr. 4^-7. Joe Stoshack and his mom aren't rich, so when Joe finds a valuable baseball card in an old lady's attic, he thinks he's got it made. Joe is an avid baseball card collector so he knows that the Honus Wagner card is baseball's rarest find. What he doesn't know is that the card has properties that allow both Joe and Honus Wagner to travel through time. Joe (now rather inexplicably a man) even gets to play in the 1909 World Series. This peppy, pleasing offering is well researched and should delight young baseball fans; even readers not into sports will enjoy the fantasy elements. The inclusion of a few historical photos is a nice touch, too. Since Joe's ability to travel in time comes through his touching certain baseball cards, expect more trips with Joe around long-ago bases. ((Reviewed April 15, 1997)) Copyright 2000 Booklist Reviews

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Horn Book Guide Reviews 1997
While cleaning out a neighbor's attic, Joe finds a valuable Honus Wagner baseball card. As Joe equivocates over keeping the card, he has several mystical encounters with Wagner, and time travels to 1909, where he gets to play in the World Series. Baseball fans will enjoy the sports action; others will find the protagonist remote and the prose more efficient than inspired. Illustrated with black-and-white historic photos. Copyright 1998 Horn Book Guide Reviews

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Publishers Weekly Reviews 1997 February #2
Baseball, time travel and magic converge in Gutman's (The Kid Who Ran for President; The Way Baseball Works) joyfully entertaining yarn. Cleaning out his neighbor's attic, gawky 12-year-old Joe Stoshack discovers a mint-condition, T-206 Honus Wagner 1909 baseball card "the most valuable piece of cardboard in the world." At first he's thrilled, then he feels guilty about taking the $450,000 card from its rightful owner, the wryly named 100-year-old Miss Young. Before he can conclude his moral deliberations, Joe comes face to face with Honus Wagner himself, who helps him with both his dilemma and his Little League baseball swing, courtesy of the 1909 World Series. Gutman's direct, no-frills writing style and the inclusion of vintage photos of Wagner in his heyday add a nostalgic quality to the book. The author also adds an interesting epilogue about the real Honus Wagner and why readers are extremely unlikely to find one of his baseball cards in anyone's attic. For sports fans who like a snappy plot along with the play-by-play, this novel hits at least a triple. Ages 8-12. (Mar.) Copyright 1998 Publishers Weekly Reviews

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School Library Journal Reviews 1997 June
An intriguing time-travel novel. While 12-year-old Joe Stoshack is cleaning out Miss Young's attic for spending money, he finds the world's most valuable baseball card, picturing Honus Wagner. Joe wrestles with the thought of telling Miss Young about his discovery and of returning it to her. But she had instructed him to throw out all the junk in the attic, and he knows the money raised from selling the card would help his single mother. That night, Joe wakes up to see Wagner in his bedroom, and they eventually travel back in time to the 1909 World Series. Gutman includes plenty of factual baseball information in this short novel. An appendix helps readers sort out fact from fantasy. Most young baseball-card collectors will have heard about the famous Honus Wagner cards, one of which was sold in 1991 for almost half-a-million dollars, making the premise of the story familiar. Black-and-white photos of Wagner and the series, although sometimes dark or grainy, add authenticity to the book. An enjoyable escape into another decade. Copyright 1998 School Library Journal Reviews

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