Sunday, November 8, 2009

Book Review: GAME SIX by Mark Frost (Hyperion, 2009)

Subtitle this one "Mark Jumps the Shark." Frost, the author of a couple of outstanding books on golf history -- one of which was made into a not-so-bad Disney feature film -- trades in his clubs and tees for a Louisville Slugger and promptly waves and misses at what should have been an eminently hittable pitch. In telling the story of Game 6 of the 1975 World Series between Cincinnati and Boston, Frost piles the background details high, but he makes an unfortunate mistake by interweaving much of this material around a pitch-by-pitch recounting of the classic game. The result is a cluttered, half-gaited narrative that only occasionally excites real interest. The long coda detailing the fates of the Reds and Red Sox provides an opportunity for Frost to air his views on what's become of the national pastime since Carlton Fisk's famous homer clanged off the Fenway Park foul pole, and the going gets tedious fairly quickly. Peter Gammons' BEYOND THE SIXTH GAME, though much less ambitious, is a much better read.

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