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Calico Joe Audio CD – Audiobook, Unabridged

31 customer reviews

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Product Details

  • Audio CD
  • Publisher: Random House Audio; Unabridged edition (April 10 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 9780449011003
  • ISBN-13: 978-0449011003
  • ASIN: 0449011003
  • Product Dimensions: 12.9 x 2.7 x 15 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 136 g
  • Average Customer Review: 3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (31 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #559,375 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description


Praise for Calico Joe
“Grisham knocks it out of the park.”—The Washington Post
“An enjoyable, heartwarming read that’s not just for baseball fans.”—USA Today
Praise for John Grisham
“Never let it be said this man doesn’t know how to spin a good yarn.”—Entertainment Weekly
“Grisham may well be the best American storyteller writing today.”—The Philadelphia Inquirer

About the Author

JOHN GRISHAM is the author of twenty-four novels, one work of nonfiction, a collection of stories, and two novels for young readers. He lives in Virginia and Mississippi.

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Customer Reviews

3.9 out of 5 stars

Most helpful customer reviews

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Toni Osborne TOP 100 REVIEWER on April 9 2013
Format: Mass Market Paperback
"Calico Joe" is a breezy little novel coming just under 200 pages , it is the first-person account of a fictionalized beaning of a Chicago Cubs prodigy by the name of Joe Castle, from Calico Rock , Ark. The story is narrated by Paul Tracey, son of Warren, the head-hunting power pitcher for the New York Mets who aimed a fast ball at the head Joe Calico and took him out of the game and ended his career.

In the summer of 1973 Joe Castle was the boy wonder and the greatest rookie anyone had ever seen and quickly became the idol of every baseball fan in America, including Paul Tracey. One day when Warren Tracey finally faced Calico Joe. Paul was in the stands, rooting for both his idol and his dad. Then the fatal pitch came and their life changed for ever.

In vintage Grisham fashion the story picks up pace as the story unfolds and jumps ahead almost four decades. Joe Castle is barely a functional groundskeeper at a school back in Calico and Warren Tracey is dying of cancer at home in Florida. Paul who had abandoned baseball a long time ago decided to track down Castle for reconciliation between him and his dad.

This novel is worthy of our valuable time whether you are a baseball fan or not. It is a total contrast to Mr. Grisham typical novels that are full of twists and turns and tension, “Calico Joe” is simply a sweet and simple story with a moral and of a relationship between a father and son. The beginning of the book is a detailed account on how the game is played with all the rules and jargon. This is rather a sad plot with very moving elements of forgiveness and redemption and the main drive that kept me turning the pages.
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Format: Hardcover
I was looking forward to reading this novel...since i know mr grisham's work and know the sport of baseball like no other. Here we are back in the times of old when baseball was actually broadcast on one of the three main networks,saturday afternoon's on nbc,with joe garagiola and chevy tv ads(though these remembrances are missing from the novel). It is a short and whimsical novel...when Grisham writes these sports novels,like playing for pizza in parma...we have a novella more than a full fleshed novel. I have given this effort a 4 out of 5...since i enjoy a novelist going into different terrain...and here away from the law offices his mind is going into and expanding the frontiers of the sports world...bring his knowledge of the legal world and the characters he has drawn from years in that the world of sports. Mr Grisham is interesting a she tells us in the legal world of the innocent,people usually caught in the legal system,and the jungles of society,largely unprotected and how often the large legal firms are more interested in making the big bucks...but somewhere there is always a someone out there,unplanned almost random,who cares enough to protect the innocent...since they deserve a fair hearing...this decency always breaks through in the authorial voice...and here we have the characters of paul..the dad...and calico joe. What if ound interesting is the character of calico joe..paul and the dad never make their way into our hearts...they are characters who haunt our sports world who dont belong in the tale grisham tells of tony kubec being maimed with a ball in the throat cutting short a promising career...calico joe is himself a target of the beamball,,,and is a target in so many ways...the malice of the human heart aimed his way for no apparent reason...Read more ›
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By Donald Mitchell #1 HALL OF FAMETOP 10 REVIEWER on May 5 2012
Format: Hardcover
"Judge not, and you shall not be judged. Condemn not, and you shall not be condemned. Forgive, and you will be forgiven." -- Luke 6:37 (NKJV)

Much baseball fiction is all wrapped up in the kind of juvenile fantasies that grown men continue to indulge. I admire John Grisham for going against the grain and looking at baseball through the lens of what can be wrong about baseball: self-centered players, abuse, sexual infidelity, cruelty, envy, and lying. Rather than just portraying that dark side, Mr. Grisham also exposes the possibility of receiving forgiveness, being reconciled to those who have been harmed, and finding peace. It's a nice ethical journey carried out amid some pretty exciting baseball writing that is soundly based.

Despite my admiration for Mr. Grisham's conception, I didn't feel that he carried it off nearly as well as he needed to. The rise of Calico Joe in the book's beginning is so far beyond possibility that reading those sections makes you feel that Mr. Grisham was just entertaining himself rather than trying to build the best possible story. A less over-the-top biography for Calico Joe would have worked a lot better, in my opinion. The fable-like quality led me to feel outside the story, rather than inside it with the characters.

The dark side of the story also seemed overdrawn. It's as though only absolute perfect white and the blackest black would satisfy readers. That's not giving readers enough credit. What about writing about real human beings of the kind we've all met? That would bring the message home much more than having such an extreme contrast.

I also found that the book lacked suspense. I didn't feel the tension build very much because what came next was kept quite predictable.
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