Sunday, May 30, 2010

Book Review: The Negro Leagues Revisited: Conversations with 66 more baseball heroes

The Negro Leagues Revisited: Conversations with 66 More Baseball Heroes

Brent Kelley
McFarland Publishing, 2010
389 pp.

"The Negro Leagues Revisited"
is Brent Kelley's follow-up to his successful collection of Negro League interviews "Voices from the Negro Leagues". Originally published in 2000, McFarland is celebrating its 10 year anniversary by releasing it in paperback form. Sadly, as of this writing less than one-third of the 66 players interviewed for this collection are deceased. The interviews span the careers of Negro League players from the 1920's through the 1960's.

Even though many of the legends are no longer with us, Kelley has managed to capture an important time in both baseball and American history by letting these men who played in the Negro Leagues tell their stories of competing in an era of segregation. Many are unaware that the Negro Leagues had a collection of veterans that made the league run in addition to the likes of Satchel Paige, Josh Gibson and Buck Leonard.

He brings to life the voices of such colorful players as Buck O'Neil, "The Human Vacuum Cleaner" Bobby Robinson, Ted "Double Duty" Radcliffe, Andy "Pullman" Porter, and Buster Haywood who was Hank Aaron's manager in the Negro Leagues. Listen and enjoy their tales of traveling the United States and the Caribbean playing against all of the greats of baseball. It's a compelling look into the lives of the men who for most of their career, played in obscurity solely due to the color of their skin.


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