Casey at the Bat
In this lengthy picture book, the life and times of the inimitable Stengel is given complete coverage. From his less than stellar playing days to the controversies of his coaching career, Stengel's various eccentricities are covered with affection and humor. I hadn't known anything about this legendary coach, and was vastly amused by how outspoken and outrageous he was. Sometimes this worked for him, but other times it didn't, and the reader is given enough information to draw personal conclusions about whether or not Stengel was successful at what he set out to do.
The message of believing in oneself and persevering through difficulties is clear, but there is a slight feeling that perhaps Stengel didn't help himself by being so difficult. While the age range on this book is given as 4-8, I think that even tween and teen readers will find a lot to take away from this book. I'm very curious to read You Never Heard of Sandy Koufax?! and You Never Heard of Willie Mays?!, also by these authors.