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Download Samurai Shortstop Audiobook

Extended Audio Sample Samurai Shortstop Audiobook, by Alan Gratz Click for printable size audiobook cover
3.47529411764706 out of 53.47529411764706 out of 53.47529411764706 out of 53.47529411764706 out of 53.47529411764706 out of 5 3.48 (17 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Alan Gratz Narrator: Arthur Morey Publisher: Penguin Random House Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date: November 2006 ISBN: 9780739336403
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Tokyo, 1890. High school can be brutal, even in turn-of-the-century Japan.

From his first day at boarding school, Toyo Shimada sees how upperclassmen make a sport out of terrorizing the first-years. Still, he’s taken aback when the seniors keep him from trying out for the baseball team–especially after he sees their current shortstop. Toyo isn’t afraid to prove himself; He’s more troubled by his uncle’s recent suicide. Although Uncle Koji’s defiant death was supposedly heroic, it has made Toyo question many things about his family’s samurai background. And worse, Toyo fears that his father may be next.

It all has something to do with –the way of the warrior–but Toyo doesn’t understand even after his father agrees to teach it to him. As the gulf between them grows wider, Toyo searches desperately for a way to prove there is a place for his family’s samurai values in modern Japan. Baseball might just be the answer, but will his father ever accept a “Western” game that stands for everything he despises?


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Listener Opinions

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Sharon | 1/3/2014

    " I'm not usually into either A) baseball or B) samurai, but my attention was captivated by this dense, thought-provoking novel. Samurai Shortstop sets its major theme, the clash of modern Western values with tradition Japan in the 1890s, with the ritual suicide of Toyo's uncle, one of a dying breed of samurai. Throughout the book, Toyo becomes aware of these values in his elite boarding school, and especially through the baseball games that he believes perfectly encompass many of the traditional samurai concepts of working in harmony. An unusual work of historical fiction that likely will be devoured by those who discover its charms. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 April | 12/25/2013

    " Interesting historical fiction about turn-of-the-century Japan and the clash between tradition and modernization. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Cathy | 12/16/2013

    " As Japan becomes colonialized by the U.S., American customs like baseball gain popularity while traditions like Samurais are outlawed. Toyo Shimeda's uncle Koji takes his life following a failed rebellion against the emperor and Koji's father rails everything modern in his newspaper articles and plans to take his life by sekuru. Koji, though loves baseball and trains and doesn't understand his father or uncle. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Andre Joseph | 12/10/2013

    " In the book Toyo family used to be samurai. Since samurai are not allowed anymore aToyo uncle commited seppeku. Toyo is afraid his father will follow. Meanwhile at Ichiko toyo wants to make the baseball team. He is also learning the ways of Bushido. Then in the end he makes the baseball team, his father didnt commit suppeku, and he learned Bushido. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Romit | 11/15/2013

    " Great Book! Gratz does a great job mixing baseball and the japanese culture all into one book! "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 S10_Matthew | 9/12/2013

    " 3rd to 7th grade appropriate "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Kelsey Christensen | 7/21/2013

    " Interesting book about a boy in Japan who loves baseball. He goes to a snobby exclusive boys' school(always interesting), and his father is an old-school samurai who doesn't want to accept the new order of Japan in which all are commoners. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Mizmuzikmama Musiker | 7/1/2013

    " Japanese baseball in 1890's. What an original theme. Well written, exciting coming of age story, great read for anyone, particularly for baseball enthusiasts. I learned a lot about Japanese culture too. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Ryan Mclaughlin | 5/29/2013

    " I would have enjoyed this book much more 5-10 years ago. For its intended audience, it is fast-paced and well developed. Possibly under-researched for historical fiction. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Julie | 5/1/2013

    " I had a hard time identifying with and liking the characters of this book. It is a coming-of-age story about a Japanese boy in Japan during the end of the conflict between the traditional samurai and Westernization. Baseball is beginning to be a large part of Japanese culture in the early 1900s. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Deb | 3/25/2013

    " It took me some time to get into this and I didn't like some of the brutality, especially the bullying. However, I really began to like it about halfway. The connection between Samurai bushido and baseball was pretty cool. i think boys, especially those that like baseball, would like this book. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Raven | 11/11/2012

    " I really loved reading this book.Some of the characters got on my nerve.LOL I choose this book for a book report. I randomly chose this book too. I LOVED IT! Totally recommend it!!!! "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 rat dog girl | 2/10/2012

    " Well, I had a really hard time actually getting through this book. Some of the stuff the characters did in the book was just disgusting, but the ending tied everything in and made me actually almost like this book. I thought it was a good story about change. "

  • 1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5 Warren | 6/28/2011

    " I didn't like this book at all. The only reason I finished it is because it was for a book report. I don't recommend it to anyone who likes baseball or historical fiction. You would need to be interested in... I don't know what to like it. Don't read it so you don't die of boredom. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Tiffany | 8/15/2010

    " I was really surprised by this book. It was an interesting combination of baseball, history, friendship, social class differences, and growing up. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Sheryl | 3/9/2010

    " Audio. Loved this. Historical fiction with wonderful characters. A great boy book. A very interesting story of baseball. A complicated time in Japans history and the author did a great job explaining it and putting it in context. Loved the audio-great reader. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Lauriann | 2/21/2010

    " I really liked this book, it was a fast read and really fascinating. I know nothing about the samurai, and it was a great intro to that topic. "

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About the Author

Alan Gratz is the acclaimed author of several books for young readers, including Prisoner B-3087, which was named to YALSA’s 2014 Best Fiction for Young Adults list; Code of Honor, a YALSA 2016 Quick Pick; Projekt 1065; and The Brooklyn Nine, which was among Booklist‘s Top Ten Sports Books.

About the Narrator

Arthur Morey has won three AudioFile Magazine “Best Of” Awards: in 2011 for Biography and History, in for History and Historical Fiction, and in 2009 for Nonfiction and Culture. His work has also garnered multiple AudioFile Earphones awards, and he has been nominated for an Audie Award. He graduated from Harvard and did graduate work at the University of Chicago. He has won awards for his fiction and drama, worked as an editor with several book publishers, and taught literature and writing at Northwestern University. As a narrator, he has received nineteen AudioFile Earphones Awards and been a finalist for the prestigious Audie Award.