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Blockade Billy by Stephen King

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English (69)  Dutch (1)  All languages (70)
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Yes I hardly know much about the sport baseball and do not understand the love for it although thinking a little more about it, I understand that love much more than for instance the love for American football or basketball. So boring but baseball can be very entertaining. So in hindsight yes I can understand.
Anyway, I wish I understood more of the terms SK was using in this book because I am sure it would make the story even better because you understand more what is happening in the game.

Even though I did not I really enjoyed this book (story) . Sorry Dean Koontz. I used to buy all your books too but you have had too many duds and SK never writes very bad books. Always at least 3 stars worth in my opinion.
Stephen King is The Master!

( )
  Marlene-NL | Mar 12, 2016 |
Nice short story/novelette by King.

In general, I am not a big reader of short stories--I tend to like to enjoy getting lost in a story for a longer period of time then it takes for me to read most short stories. However, in general I find King's short stories extremely satisfying--they are beautifully complete, with an introduction, a plot that leads to a climactic moment (or two) and a satisfying closeout. It is like his short stories are written in exactly the style that I was taught to write essays in elementary school: Opening paragraph that states the thesis, three paragraphs with examples to prove the thesis, and a closing paragraph where you restate the thesis. There is something very satisfying to me to read a short story that this constructed so simply and comprehensibly.

( )
  magerber | Feb 22, 2016 |
Very quick read, read it in less than an hour. Never read anything by stephen king until this. I dont get sports at all so most of the lingo was lost on my but there was an interesting twist in the end. ( )
  micahmom2002 | Jan 25, 2016 |
Very quick read, read it in less than an hour. Never read anything by stephen king until this. I dont get sports at all so most of the lingo was lost on my but there was an interesting twist in the end. ( )
  micahmom2002 | Jan 25, 2016 |
Blockade Billy is the story of "the greatest Major League baseball player to be erased from the game". More specifically, Stephen King gives us the story of William "Bill" Blakely", a catcher for the New Jersey Titans who is called up from a farm team due to unfortunate circumstances for the team. Blockade Billy brings life and hope to the team, but he harbors a terrible secret "darker than any pill or injection that might cause a scandal in sports today".

Overall, Blockade Billy is an intriguing story of what happened to cause the greatest baseball player in MLB history to be completely stricken from the record books and, thus, his team also largely forgotten. King, not simply as the author of this novella, but as a character in the book comes to interview the former third base coach of the New Jersey Titans in his retirement home so that he can find out the fully story of William Blakely, Blockade Billy.

What I found interesting and effective about this story is that it is written, especially at the beginning, as if King really was interviewing this third base coach. So, the very beginning of the book reads a bit like a "front porch story" that your elder relatives would tell with all these little asides about what life was like back in 1957 and how baseball was different. Thus, the story overall has this sort of charming story tone to it.

Because the novella is presented as King (the character/author) interviewing this former third base coach, the language is a bit salty at times and peppered with a couple of "f***'s" that some parents might not feel as appropriate for a younger reader. I was actually surprised that I picked this book up not in the young adult section of a bookstore but in the intermediate readers section given the language in the book.

Blockade Billy is also not a typical edge-of-your-seat page turner that we have come to expect of King. While Billy's secret is disturbing, it's disturbing in the sense that it something that we would likely hear on the news, so it could very well be a real news story or history of this incredible baseball player. Despite it not being an edge-of-your-seat page turner, the book is enjoyable and I did read the entire book in one sitting; after ally, it's only just over 130 pages in length.

Billed as a novella, Blockade Billy seems awfully short for this designation; in fact, the story only comprises 80 of the 132 pages of the hardcover Scribner edition of the book. The remaining 52 pages are comprised of another short story "Morality", which I almost enjoyed more than Blockade Billy. The premise of "Morality" is that a young married woman who works as an in-home healthcare nurse for a retired Reverend has been propositioned by the Reverend to commit a sin because he wants the experience of truly sinning at least once in his life. Will she accept his offer of a good deal of money to perform and record this sin for the Reverend or won't she? If she does, what are the consequences?

The nature of some aspects of this story, "Morality" might be considered inappropriate for younger readers. ( )
  slpwhitehead | Jan 17, 2016 |
Showing 1-5 of 69 (next | show all)
As King's fiction goes, this suspenseful short is a deftly executed suicide squeeze, with sharp spikes hoisted high and aimed at the jugular on the slide home.
added by Shortride | editPublishers Weekly (Apr 5, 2010)
 
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This is for every guy (and gal) who ever put on the gear.
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William Blakely?
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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Book description
Long-time baseball fan Stephen King's darkly funny novella of the Golden Age of baseball tells the story of one of the best players ever and why you've never heard of him.
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From New York Times bestselling author Stephen King comes the haunting story of Blockade Billy , the greatest Major League baseball player to be erased from the game. Even the most die-hard baseball fans don't know the true story of William "Blockade Billy" Blakely. He may have been the greatest player the game has ever seen, but today no one remembers his name. He was the first--and only--player to have his existence completely removed from the record books. Even his team is long forgotten, barely a footnote in the game's history. Every effort was made to erase any evidence that William Blakely played professional baseball, and with good reason. Blockade Billy had a secret darker than any pill or injection that might cause a scandal in sports today. His secret was much, much worse... and only Stephen King, the most gifted storyteller of our age, can reveal the truth to the world, once and for all.… (more)

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