"Outside a dog a book is man's best friend, inside a dog it is too dark to read!" -Groucho Marx========="The person, be it gentleman or lady, who has not pleasure in a good novel, must be intolerably stupid." -Jane Austen========="I don’t believe in the kind of magic in my books. But I do believe something very magical can happen when you read a good book."-JK Rowling========"I spend a lot of time reading." -Bill Gates=========“Ahhh. Bed, book, kitten, sandwich. All one needed in life, really.” -Jacqueline Kelly=========

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

We are the Ship: the Story of Negro League Baseball by Kadir Nelson

We are the Ship: the Story of Negro League Baseball illustrated and written by Kadir Nelson is a must- read book for all Americans, especially baseball fans. Obviously, by the subtitle, it is about Negro League baseball but it is more than that.  It is about racism and overcoming racism.  It is about the men who found a way to play the game they loved against huge odds. I learned so much by listening to this award-winning audiobook version of the book which was so masterfully read by Dion Graham. However I knew as I listened that I needed to look at the book because Kadir Nelson is first and foremost an artist.  I checked the book out from the public library and thoroughly enjoyed it, as I suspected I would.  I addition, I took a long look at Kadir Nelson's web-page and suggest that you do the same thing here: (Link)

Now let me get on my soap-box for a second.  I see such value in reading non-fiction books to inform, even when I don't know I need to be informed.  I knew next to nothing about the Negro Baseball League prior to reading this book, now I know quite a bit.  I relish opportunities to learn new things, to view the world from a bit of a different vantage point, and to always remain open to new ideas.  I hope that this quick little review will encourage you to pick up a nonfiction gem, even if it is a short one with illustrations like We are the Ship, and be prepared to glean some new information.  Here are a few choice quotes on the value of reading for information:

“The best effect of any book is that it excites the reader to self-activity.” – Thomas Carlyle

“To read without reflecting is like eating without digesting.” – Edmund Burke

“Let me roughly divide books into those which compete with the movies and those with which the movies cannot compete. They are the books that can elevate or instruct. If they are fine works of fiction, they can deepen your appreciation of human life. If they are serious works of nonfiction, they can inform or enlighten you.” – Mortimer Adler

Happy reading.

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