The Big Field

Common Sense Media says

Action-packed, emotional dad-son baseball story.

Age(i)

2
3
4
5
6
7
8
9
10
11
12
13
14
15
16
17

Quality(i)

 

What parents need to know

Positive messages

Lupica deftly uses Hutch's rivalry with Darryl to lay bare Hutch's
troubled relationship with his distant and disappointed father, who has
given up on life and wants Hutch to do the same. This is what you hope
for when you recommend a sports book to reluctant readers: action that
will keep them riveted to the page in a story will help deepen their
understanding of the game, of people, and of life.

Positive role models

Hutch works hard a being a good person and team captain, and at doing the right thing.

Violence

A brief scuffle.

Sex
Not applicable
Language
Not applicable
Consumerism

Gatorade, Blockbuster, Dairy Queen, Nike, Dell.

Drinking, drugs, & smoking

Hutch's dad drinks beer a lot.

Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that, aside from the mentions of some products, there is nothing to be concerned about here. Hutch, despite some understandable mistakes, is a great role model of conscious sportsmanship and team playing.

Parents say

Kids say

What's the story?

When shortstop Hutch is moved to second base on his team to make room for more talented, but arrogant, new player Darryl, he rolls with the punches for the good of the team. But when he sees his own father, who never seems to have any time for or interest in him, coaching Darryl, he can't handle it, and endangers both what's left of his relationship with his dad, and his team's chances in the championship.

Is it any good?

QUALITY
 

Here's what most good sports books are: exciting, suspenseful, action-packed. This one is too -- the many game and practice scenes are fast-paced and lovingly described. Here's what some of the best baseball books are: lyrical, almost poetic, in their attempt to capture that indefinable feeling that makes baseball different from any other sport. This one is too -- Lupica's sharp and rhythmic prose brilliantly captures the passion, joy, intelligence, and beauty of the summertime sport.

Here's what most of those other books are not: moving, powerfully emotional, as much concerned with the characters as with the sports action. But this one is. There's really only one other writer who can pack this much emotion and sheer intelligence into sports fiction for kids: Bruce Brooks, and he hasn't had a new novel in years. Lupica deftly uses Hutch's rivalry with Darryl to lay bare Hutch's troubled relationship with his distant and disappointed father, who has given up on life and wants Hutch to do the same. This is what you hope for when you recommend a sports book to reluctant readers: action that will keep them riveted to the page in a story will help deepen their understanding of the game, of people, and of life.

Families can talk about...

  • Families can talk about Hutch's dad. Why is he the way he is?

  • Why did losing his baseball dream hit him so hard?

  • Why can't he connect

  • with his son? Also, why does Hutch love the game so much?

  • Have you ever

  • felt that way about a sport?

Book details

Author:Mike Lupica
Genre:Sports
Book type:Fiction
Publisher:Philomel
Publication date:February 25, 2008
Number of pages:288
Read aloud:9
Read alone:10

This review of The Big Field was written by

About our rating system

  • ON: Content is age-appropriate for kids this age.
  • PAUSE: Know your child; some content may not be right for some kids.
  • OFF: Not age-appropriate for kids this age.
  • NOT FOR KIDS: Not appropriate for kids of any age.

Find out more

Quality

Our star rating assesses the media's overall quality.

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Learning ratings

  • Best: Really engaging; great learning approach.
  • Very Good: Engaging; good learning approach.
  • Good: Pretty engaging; good learning approach.
  • Fair: Somewhat engaging; OK learning approach.
  • Not for Learning: Not recommended for learning.
  • Not for Kids: Not age-appropriate for kids; not recommended for learning.

Find out more

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What parents and kids say

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Educator Written bysb34chick November 21, 2009
AGE
9
QUALITY
 

Fantastic Read

Mike Lupica does it again. A great story for those readers looking for something a little more challenging than Matt Christopher's famous sports books.
What other families should know
Great messages
Adult Written byRidley21 September 6, 2009
AGE
12
QUALITY
 

Perfect for teenagers (12,13,14,15,16,17,18)

My 13 year old son hates to read and out of all of the books he had to read in his life he only liked three books and "The Big Field" is one of those three books
What other families should know
Educational value
Great messages
Great role models
Written byAnonymous March 24, 2014
AGE
9
QUALITY
 

Rated ON

Rated ON for brief mild violence and emotional situations.

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