George Vecsey has been writing about baseball for 50 years. When he was a kid Vecsey rooted for the Brooklyn Dodgers. The St. Louis Cardinals had a hitting star then, a fellow named Stan Musial. They called him "Stan the Man." Vecsey has fond memories of those Dodger/Cardinal games of the 1940's and '50's.
Vecsey's new biography of Musial reveals the story of Musial's humble origins in a steel mill town in Pennsylvania. We learn how Musial achieved fame yet never lost his sense of kinship with ordinary people.
Melissa Fay Greene is the author of a number of highly respected works. Her book "Praying for Sheetrock" was named one of the top 100 journalistic works of the twentieth century by the journalism department at New York University. Greene has chosen some weighty topics to cover; the bombing of a synagogue in "The Temple Bombing", and the African AIDS-HIV pandemic in "There Is No Me Without You".
Philip Kerr wrote his first Bernie Gunther novels back in the 1980's. He wrote several then he shelved the project and went on to other things.
Kerr's Bernie Gunther character is a Berlin cop in the 1930's. He was a homicide detective when Adolph Hitler's National Socialists came to power.Suddenly, there were a lot more homicides to investigate.
Jimmy Breslin has written a biography of Branch Rickey. Rickey was the owner of the Brooklyn Dodgers baseball club. He is the man who brought the first black ball player into the major leagues. That man was Jackie Robinson.
This is the story of how Rickey made that fateful decision to break what was then known as the color line in baseball. It was a decision that changed America forever.
Kate Atkinson writes some complex literary fiction. Her latest novel "Started Early, Took My Dog" derives it's title from a poem by Emily Dickinson. This is her 4th novel featuring private investigator (now retired) Jackson Brodie.
Each book is this series has been utterly different. In the previous one, "When Will There Be Good News?" Brodie spent much of the book in a coma after being involved in a train wreck. He barely existed in that one.