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Download The Big Field Audiobook (Unabridged)

Extended Audio Sample The Big Field (Unabridged), by Mike Lupica
3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 3.00 (1,593 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Mike Lupica Narrator: Christopher Evan Welch Publisher: Recorded Books Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date: July 2009 ISBN:
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Award-winning journalist and ESPN personality Mike Lupica crafts a moving novel about baseball, sacrifice, and father/son relationships.

Hutch has always played shortstop. His idol Derek Jeter, plays the position, and more importantly, so did his father. But when a better shortstop joins the team, Hutch must move to second base. With his father's shadow looming and the championship on the line, Hutch will need to make the adjustment quickly. Download and start listening now!

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Listener Opinions

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Betsy | 2/3/2014

    " This will give you a sense of my sportsy prowess. I'm in a bookstore the other day and I see a book with a quote on it from Mike Lupica. The only thing is, it's an adult book. One that has to do with sports of some sort. So I rub my head and I actually have this thought while standing there: What is Mike Lupica doing writing quotes for adult books? You see the problem here? I know Mike Lupica as one thing and one thing only; this is the guy who knows how to write a fabulous sports-related work of fiction for young readers. He's the Matt Christopher of the new millennium. Now I don't like sports myself. They don't really fall within my perceived everyday reality. I know they exist and I know that people follow them, but as far as I can tell I am interested in virtually nothing that has to do with one or another. But do I head for the hills when I see that Mr. Lupica has written a new title for his young fans? I most certainly do not! The notable thing about The Big Field is that it returns the author to what is undoubtedly his favorite sport to write about. Baseball. Lupica lovea him the natural tension and stress and story arc that comes with the game. You can hardly blame him. The craziness is that in the process of getting excited, this author has the ability to get YOU rather excited too. I don't love baseball. I know that a lot of kids are like me in this respect, but hand them a copy of The Big Field and get them to read the first few chapters. If Mike Lupica does nothing else, he proves to us that good writing is good writing and can lure you in, regardless of the subject matter. Fourteen-year-old Keith "Hutch" Hutchinson isn't the star of his American Legion team, Boynton Beach Post 226, the Cardinals. That honor belongs entirely to his fellow teammate Darryl. Hutch doesn't even mind all that much since it's really the love of the game that keeps him going. He's the team Captain and a pretty swell player in his own right, not that his dad would ever notice. A former local baseball star himself, Hutch's father had dreams once of hitting the big league. When those dreams didn't come to fruition he decided to protect his only son by denying him any pointers or chances to share in the game they both love so much. Now Hutch's team has a chance to make it all the way. To play for the state championship on "the big field" at Roger Dean Stadium in Jupiter. Only trouble is, there are some problems with Darryl and they involve Mr. Hutchinson. Hutch has never allowed outside distractions to keep him from playing his best, but now it looks as if the fate of the entire team depends on him and his ability to figure out why his dad is the way he is. I saw a lot of similarities between Hutch in this book and the character of House in Deborah Wiles' The Aurora County All-Stars. In both cases the hero is a kind of Gary Cooper type. Thoughtful and a bit wise beyond his years, but still prone to anger if riled. And riled he gets! The raw jealousy Hutch feels when he sees his father playing baseball with the team star, something Hutch himself has never done, is palpable. It practically sends little ripples down the page. Normally in a middle grade novel a kid will feel betrayed by a parent or a friend and then just sit and stew for chapter after chapter. I was a little afraid that Lupica might go this route as well, but fortunately this wasn't the case. So it felt strangely satisfying to watch Hutch rip into his dad about everything the man has ever done wrong. It's excellent. You want to sip a cool drink after reading a passage like that. And what's even better is that Lupica can make Hutch be entirely in the right one moment and then entirely in the wrong the next without so much as a narrative hiccup. I've read Heat and some of Miracle on 49th Street so I'm not a complete Lupica newbie. And from these books I've noticed a trend in the author's work. Mike Lupica has a deep and abiding interest in and affection for the smart alecky sidekick. The kind of sidekick that ends up being the voice of reason more than once, but is so jokey that the reader isn't supposed to notice. Some might see this as Lupica getting lazy with his characters, but personally I didn't really mind. In this book the sidekick is Cody, a kid who's been friends with Hutch since the beginning. As with many sidekicks he begins by being the untamed fellow who puts down Darryl while Hutch murmurs that they're all on the same team. Then, at some point, the tables turn and it's Cody who has to keep Hutch in line (and out of trouble). In Heat this kind of character would help the hero directly in a kind of deus ex machina manner. Here, Hutch has to do all the work himself, and as a hero he rises satisfactorily to the challenge. Lupica isn't afraid of putting contemporary flourishes on his book. This will date it a bit more than it might if he left them out entirely, but in a way I enjoyed it. Admittedly, I liked the references to Derek Jeter better than the references to 24, but whatchagonnado? By the way, can I say how nice it is to have a protagonist in a book who isn't whitey white white? Hutch is part Dominican and it's not a big deal in any way, shape, or form. It defines who he is but isn't the focus of the narrative. It's just part of the story, and it's something that sets the book apart from the ten bazillion books with white kids in `em that stock our library and bookstore shelves. You know what it is about this writer? Lupica satisfies a reader, deep down somewhere. You read one of his books and you feel good about... something. Maybe it's just about a game, or maybe it's about the characters and what they've figured out, but you feel good. Like you've accomplished something big. For kids who are already converts to Lupica's style, The Big Field is not going to be a hard sell. But for kids who enjoy sports and want something a little contemporary and fun, this will be a good Intro to Lupica: 101. Heck, even if they don't like sports this book will still suck you in. That is, if you can get `em past the initial premise. I hate utilizing sports metaphors when describing literature, so let's just take the phrase, "Lupica hits another one out of the park," switch it out for its literary equivalent for now. Ages 8-14. "

  • 1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5 Mark D. | 1/31/2014

    " This book has NOO plot. DO NOT READ!!! "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Austin Shumaker | 1/30/2014

    " This book is very good. I liked it alot. Sometimes it is hard to understand but if you go back and re read the part it makes sense "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Helmeralvarez | 1/28/2014

    " The book is so great. Hutch is a good baseball player but, till a new kid comes and takes his spot. Hutch's dad was pro baseball player. But, he never comes to his son's game till he has respect for the game. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Kathy | 1/28/2014

    " I liked this better than I thought I would. I am not much of a baseball fan, but the characters drew me in. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Chandra | 1/14/2014

    " If you love baseball, then this is a great book for you. It is all about being stars and how to deal with it. Also there are some family issues dealt with too. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Joshy | 1/14/2014

    " This book is for all those sports fans out there. This book taught me never to give up during hard times. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Sam Freeman | 1/10/2014

    " Think was very good book had great details and had many great characters. It was very inspirational and had many good facts and I love this book because it has baseball in it "

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

    " I know very little about baseball so I was confused for a lot of it. But i liked the story with the son and father. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Cyndi | 12/31/2013

    " This is a great baseball book. I loved it but if you weren't familiar with baseball terms, you probably wouldn't like it. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Kandyce Barber | 12/27/2013

    " An interesting story of a boy who lives for baseball even though his father tries just as hard not to be a part of baseball. Probably a better read if you like baseball. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 James Lyman | 10/7/2013

    " It was really good it was my favorite till true legend came around. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Chris Wilson | 10/6/2013

    " The book is a really good one. People who like sports but are not into sports are going to like this book. Mike Lupica is a hard author for young kids. I like him as an author. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Jayanne | 5/27/2013

    " Not usually a fan of sports fiction - but this was great. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Anthony(the world class soccer player | 12/8/2012

    " this was my first realistic fiction book i read this year and to be the first it was actually pretty good. i like the way they describe the things that he is doing. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Jackie | 10/22/2012

    " Playing for the league championship, this story of Hutch, Cody, and Darryl depicts family relationships and being a team player. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Mason Buckendahl | 8/16/2012

    " This book was very interesting to read. I like baseball, and this book was about baseball. It was fun reading because you didn't know what was gonna happen next. Overall this was one of my top fifteen books ever read. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Carlo Martinez | 7/14/2012

    " The Big Field is an interesting-dramatic book to read. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Judy | 6/19/2012

    " Hutch learns the importance of keeping dreams and expectations in perspective as he captains his baseball team to the playoffs. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Chris Lanara | 5/6/2012

    " Its a very good book. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Nick | 10/1/2011

    " When i first started reading this book i thought it was kind of slow. then in chapter 3 it started to get better. now im in chapter 7 and i think its a great book. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Russell | 5/12/2011

    " people who play baseball will enjoy this more but even if you do not play baseball you will still enjoy this "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Joe | 4/27/2011

    " I love the pacing of the sports moments. Lupica does that extremely well. It's when he gets into the more serious issues that his writing starts to falter for me. Great book, though. I can hardly keep it on my shelf. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Leah | 4/10/2011

    " It took a long time to get into it. didn't get interesting until the ending chapters "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Dana | 4/1/2011

    " One of 10 titles on our middle school Book Battle list. Not as good as Heat, but if Mike Lupica can make me want to read about sports, how can you go wrong for a kid that loves sports? "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Drew | 3/18/2011

    " This is the emotional story of a shortstop named Hutch. His dad loved baseball, loved it too much. Struggling with two jobs, he never has time to see Hutch play. Will the two meet on solid ground, or be separated forever. "

  • 1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5 Mark | 2/13/2011

    " This book has NOO plot. DO NOT READ!!! "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Beasleytr | 2/9/2011

    " i just started the book and nothing much is happening. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Chandra | 12/22/2010

    " If you love baseball, then this is a great book for you. It is all about being stars and how to deal with it. Also there are some family issues dealt with too. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Matt | 12/22/2010

    " Read this a few years ago. Really good book. Anybody who liked Heat by Mike Lupica would also like this. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Sam | 12/21/2010

    " Think was very good book had great details and had many great characters. It was very inspirational and had many good facts and I love this book because it has baseball in it "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Jon | 12/2/2010

    " Vital play, Lupica's book is so well written.

    I am primary a soccer fan, but I do love baseball fan.

    I would rate this book a 4 out of 5.

    Great thinker and writer. "

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