The Bat Boy and His Violin

The Bat Boy and His Violin

By Gavin Curtis; E. B. Lewis (Illustrator)

Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers, Hardcover, 9780689800993, 1pp.

Publication Date: April 1, 1998


"Is -- Reginald -- at -- it -- again?" Papa shouts between notes.

"Hush up," Mama says, "I just love this one."

Papa sometimes comes home in a bad mood because he's the manager of the Dukes -- the worst team in the Negro National League.

Reginald loves his violin. His constant practice pays off in floods of beautiful music. But Papa could care less about Reginald's "fiddling." He's more concerned about the Dukes's losing streak, and he needs his son for something other than playing music. When Papa makes Reginald the Dukes's bat boy, Reginald worries that his practice time will suffer, and that he won't be ready for his recital. He takes on every free moment he can find to play,
and ends up filling the dugout with Mozart, Beethoven, and Bach. Soon the
Dukes begin to shake their bad luck. But there's still that big game against
the Monarchs, and there's still Papa's heart that needs winning over.

In this beautifully told story of family ties and team spirit, Gavin Curtis captures a very special period in history. Award-winning artist E.B. Lewis brings the warmth of this powerful story to life with his lush watercolor paintings.

About the Author
Gavin Curtis received a B.F.A. degree from the School of Visual Arts in New York City. He has worked as an artist at Marvel Comics, where he wrote and illustrated several anthology titles. Mr. Curtis is the author of "Grandma's Baseball, " a children's book that he also illustrated. "The Bat Boy and His Violin" is his first book for Simon & Schuster, and marks his first children's book collaboration solely as author. Mr. Curtis teaches pre-kindergarten in New York City, where he lives.

E. B. Lewis won the 2005 Caldecott Honor Book for Coming On Home Soon by Jacqueline Woodson and the 2003 Coretta Scott King Illustrator Award, for Talkin' About Bessie by Nikki Grimes. Mr. Lewis teaches illustration at Philadelphia's University of the Arts. He lives in Folsom, New Jersey.