Genre: YA contemporary/historical fiction
Release date: December 14, 2017
Ryan hated the move. He hated being uprooted from his home in New York to the rural outskirts of Nashville, Tennessee. But, little did he know of what was in store for him as he becomes wrapped up in two worlds, and in two conflicts. After touching a baseball bat found in the attic of his new home, the Belle Meade Plantation, Ryan is transported back in time to the Civil War. It is here he takes part in a baseball game between Union and Confederate soldiers on the eve of the Battle of Nashville. Entangled in two timelines, his own and the life of a soldier, Ryan tries desperately to solve the mysteries in his life. It would a summer unlike any other. A summer of baseball. A summer of brotherhood. A summer of change. A summer of war.
I was sent a digital copy of this book by the author, Kristofor Hellmeister, to read and write an honest review. All of my thoughts here are honest opinions!
I am so grateful to have gotten the chance to read this book!! Brothers of Baseball is full of lush landscapes, beautiful and old mansions, baseball, and brotherly love. I thoroughly enjoyed it!!! I rated it 3.75/5 stars on Goodreads.
There were so many amazing things about this story, but I’m going to mention the things I didn’t like so much first to get them out of the way! The reason I didn’t give the book a higher rating was because of the number of grammatical errors I found. Some readers would not be bothered by this, but as a critical reviewer and a grammar snob (yes, I’m admitting it) I couldn’t help but pay attention to the grammar and syntax in this. The sentence structure was very poor for the most part, which I was so sad to see as it made some parts of the story a little confusing.
BUT! I really loved how the author described the southern setting of Tennessee. I appreciate that because I live in the southern region of the U.S. as well, and the author wrote with a familiarity that I could relate to. The writing was very descriptive, and other than the grammatical and syntax errors that I found, I enjoyed it! Belle Meade (both the city and the plantation house) was absolutely beautiful and very true to the nature of the south.
I really enjoyed the plot of this novel also! It’s very unlike anything I’ve ever read before, which made it all the more special. As you can read in the synopsis, the main character, Ryan, gets transported to the Civil War period and a battle that takes place in his hometown. All of this happens because of an old baseball bat that he found in the attic of his family’s new house. I loved getting to follow along on Ryan’s adventures as he plays baseball with both sides of the Civil War. The author also did well describing how these ventures into the past affected Ryan’s present-day life and his perspective on his new town.
My favorite thing about this novel has to be the friendships between the players on the baseball team! After being humiliated by the town bully, Peter, at Peter’s baseball tryouts, Ryan gets invited to join another baseball team. This team is composed of boys of all different races and sizes – they’re all misfits. Yet they all have such an unlikely and beautiful bond. It’s the friendships that Ryan forms with the players on this new team that leads him to finally accept his family’s move, which he hated at first.
Derek and Ryan’s friendship was just so refreshing to see; it was so pure and full of trust. Then, we have the eccentric characters that form the rest of the baseball team – Spunk, Ash, Oreo, Herc, Wiley, Cheese, and Clapton (I feel like I’m missing one but I’m pretty sure that’s all of them). I loved this team!
The baseball element was really great! But there were several chapters that were just the characters playing baseball, and I really enjoyed them, but I think that if a reader doesn’t know much about baseball, it would be very hard for him or her to follow along. I have enough knowledge of the sport to follow along, but I still struggled at times. This is not a critique of the book at all; it’s just an observation! Even if you don’t like baseball, you would still love this story!
Also, I loved the element of Christianity in the story! It was great to see that Ryan really turned to his faith when he was struggling. I’m a Christian, but even if you aren’t, this shouldn’t turn you away from the story at all as it doesn’t take up too much of the plot.
If you’re looking for an entertaining story full of history, baseball, and amazing friendships, I highly recommend Brothers of Baseball!! The author did a great job at conveying the importance of friendship and togetherness to help a person through the ups and downs of life.
Let me know if you’ve read this book and what you thought of it!! And comment below your current read! Mine is I Am The Messenger by Markus Zusak!
Thanks for reading my bookish babblings!
buy Brothers of Baseball HERE