Ballpark Blues

Phenoms live only in books and movies, and the enigmatic Casey Fox is no exception. Tooke's tense and tight debut novel relates Fox's meteoric rise from Rhode Island College nobody to Fenway Park star and beyond, as told by a down-on-his-luck reporter named Russ Bryant. The writing is crisp and tense, like a polished bat swing, and the tale pops with everything that is Red Sox baseball. —Greg Lalas