Thursday, February 8, 2018

Review of "Out of the Shadows"

In honor of Black History Month, a baseball book group to which I belong decided to let members choose a book about the role of African Americans in the sport.  Having found this selection as an audio book at the same time this was announced, I decided to listen right away and found this collection of essays an excellent source of information of the topic.  Here is my review of "Out of the Shadows"

Out of the Shadows: African American Baseball from the Cuban Giants to Jackie Robinson” by William Kirwin (editor), narrated by Mirron Willis

Baseball, race, Negro Leagues, Dodgers, audio book, essays

Publish date:
November 1, 2005

226 pages

4 of 5 stars (very good)

Usually a collection of short stories or essays of any topic will contain some good and some not-so-good selections.  Mainly because of the topics, this collection of essays on African American baseball from the late 19th century to the integration of the major leagues in the mid-20th century is one that all readers interested in the topic should read.

Editor William Kirwin has selected a diverse selection of essays, covering topics from Cap Anson leading the way to segregate the game in the late 1880’s to discussions of female Negro League team owner Effa Manley.  The influence of writer Sol White is discussed and of course, the roles of Jackie Robinson and Branch Rickey to integrate baseball.

If readers have read other books on the subjects, they will not learn any new information here.  But for those who wish to learn about topics in which the readers do not know about this collection is a very good start.  For example, I had never heard of the Cuban Giants before picking up this book.  After hearing the essay on that team, I now wish to learn more about these trail blazers of black baseball teams.

Some of the essays are meant for entertainment, but most of them are information and scholarly in nature.  This may not be best for everyone, but these essays come highly recommended as an excellent source of information on the roles of African Americans in the game during this time frame.

Book Format Read:
Audio book

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