HomeGroupsTalkZeitgeist
Hide this

Results from Google Books

Click on a thumbnail to go to Google Books.

Satchel: the life and times of an American…
Loading...

Satchel: the life and times of an American legend (2009)

by Larry Tye

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingMentions
186963,528 (3.72)23
Loading...

Sign up for LibraryThing to find out whether you'll like this book.

No current Talk conversations about this book.

» See also 23 mentions

Showing 1-5 of 9 (next | show all)
A pretty good biography about Satchel Paige. I would have liked more about Paige's and other Negro League players' struggles with racism and Jim Crow, though. ( )
  nmele | Apr 6, 2013 |
Finally!... A fully-satisfying bio of the greatest pitcher in baseball history. Accurate info on Mr. Paige is notoriously scarce, but Tye peels away the mythology to give us a flesh-and-blood portrait of a man who was ultimately worthy of his larger-than-life stature. The truth about Satchel's exploits is often better than the glorified re-tellings.

The book is an amazing look at life in Jim Crow America and the fascinating sub-culture of barnstorming and the Negro Leagues. It's also an excellent treatise on talent, race, publicity, loyalty, and sport. I found this book to be funny, exhilarating, heartbreaking, and poignant.

A remarkable achievement. ( )
  JohnHastie | Apr 5, 2013 |
Some of my first books were juvenile sports biographies. When my class would go to the school library, I would pour over the section and read about Franco Harris and Jim Brown (no I am not that old, but the library was small). I think my favorite was reading about Franco Harris' Immaculate Reception. These stories are very white washed of controversy. As in the Harris case, it has been claimed that his reception was illegal, but the referee was not about to tell a screaming capacity crowd of Pittsburgh Steeler fans that they lost the game on his ruling with only half a dozen security guards.

Much of what I have learned about Satchel Paige is in the same regard. It focused on his legendary pitching skills, his sayings, his personality, and his age, but never covered race. This biography of Paige tells the whole story. It also cuts through a great deal of mythology on the pitcher, finding his real age, his first start in Negro baseball, his rotator cuff injury that almost finished his career, and most shockingly, even though baseball was integrated, the Cleveland Indians ball club did not want him on the team and penalized him for problems that were more the fault of Jim Crow than his.

Intergration in Baseball, like Civil Rights, was not welcome, and those in the league tried to find other methods to push these new players out. Even though do many played in the Negro Leagues for so long, it was no guarantee that they would stay in the majors. It is also further shocking that many of these players, when their playing days were over, went to menial jobs like janitors and were left in poverty and forgotten from history. In fact it was only Satchel Paige's personality and his timeless arm that prevented the same for him. His stint in the majors was relatively shortlived when compared to his decades playing baseball. I think that another mythology from the book was his speed.
Others in the league were faster, but he was smarter, more accurate, and honed those skills more carefully than others realized. Many weren't just blown away, although early on most were, but were outsmarted.

Overall, this is the best biography on Satchel Paige and one of the best I've ever read. It isn't just about Sachel, but cuts through his mythology so we can truly appreciate the amazing man he was without question. ( )
  shadowofthewind | Aug 28, 2012 |
Excellent story. Well-written. Impressive research. ( )
  bogopea | Aug 18, 2012 |
Admittedly, Larry Tye had a difficult task in writing a biography of Satchel Paige. While on the one hand, the subject himself is so fascinating that instant interest is generated, it's difficult to pin down many facts of the man's life and career. The old "Negro League Baseball" didn't keep the kinds of statistics MLB did; and Satchel Paige did a lot of barnstorming baseball, of which there are even fewer records. And then, the man was a bit of a yarn spinner himself, frequently embelishing some aspects of his life, and creating mystery around others. He was one of those rare persons whose first name (or, rather, nickname) creates immediate recognition in many listeners. But few people really knew him; he was, at heart, a loner. He was a complex character who refused to be "owned" by any team in an era long before baseball had heard of the concept of free agency. He was no saint; he spent big, bigger than he could afford to; at one point, he was apparently a bigamist. He was larger than life and possibly more talented than any baseball pitcher who walked the planet.

I think Tye does a pretty good job with this book, all things considered. There were times when I got confused about the "when" of some things, as he didn't keep to a strict chronological order. There were times when I felt the writing dragged a bit, that he repeated certain information too often.

The main things I walk away with are a sense of how awesome Satchel Paige's talent truly was, and wonderment that he could pitch so well so long, and dismay at how bigotry denied this man the kind of career he should have had, both in his prime days as a player and in later years when his baseball knowledge could have nurtured young players through coaching. ( )
  tymfos | Mar 8, 2011 |
Showing 1-5 of 9 (next | show all)
no reviews | add a review
You must log in to edit Common Knowledge data.
For more help see the Common Knowledge help page.
Series (with order)
Canonical title
Original title
Alternative titles
Original publication date
People/Characters
Important places
Important events
Related movies
Awards and honors
Epigraph
Dedication
To Buck O'Neil, Silas Simmons, and the other Negro League veterans who enthusiastically shared with me their stories about Satchel but did not live to see them told.
First words
Satchel Paige entered the world as Leroy Robert Paige.
Quotations
Last words
(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
Disambiguation notice
Publisher's editors
Blurbers
Publisher series
Original language

References to this work on external resources.

Wikipedia in English (4)

Book description
Haiku summary

No descriptions found.

A portrait of the Negro League pitcher and pioneer in the integration of baseball evaluates the role of discrimination in limiting his career, the Jim Crow biases that prevented his signing with the big leagues until he was in his forties, and his lasting legacy.… (more)

» see all 3 descriptions

Quick Links

Swap Ebooks Audio
75 wanted2 pay4 pay

Popular covers

Rating

Average: (3.72)
0.5
1
1.5
2 1
2.5
3 7
3.5 4
4 11
4.5 1
5 3

Audible.com

An edition of this book was published by Audible.com.

See editions

Is this you?

Become a LibraryThing Author.

 

Help/FAQs | About | Privacy/Terms | Blog | Contact | LibraryThing.com | APIs | WikiThing | Common Knowledge | Legacy Libraries | Early Reviewers | 91,608,901 books! | Top bar: Always visible