Wednesday, August 29, 2018

Book cover: "All on the Team"

  • Title: All on the Team
  • Author: Frances Fox Sandmel (circa 1917 to 1989)
  • Illustrator: Sylvia Roman
  • Publisher: Abingdon Press (New York and Nashville)
  • Cover price: $2.50
  • Year: 1959
  • Pages: 126
  • Format: Hardcover
  • Dust-jacket blurb: "Eli Cohen and Terry Parsons knew that they would be friends forever on the first day they met, the day they moved next door to each other. Didn't they both like baseball more than anything else? And wouldn't workouts together help them both get positions on the school team? But the road to friendship, and the team, was longer than they thought. It took time for the Jewish Cohens and the Protestant Parsons to get accustomed to living as neighbors. Once they did, however, it was not only the boys' baseball that improved; both families were enriched by the things each learned of the other's customs and religions. This a warm story of exciting baseball games, of happy life, and of two boys growing up, each in the best way for him. It should have real interest and deep meaning for children of every faith."
  • First sentence: At the moment he heard the knock on the door, two thoughts slid into Eli's mind at once: It really didn't happen, no one could have knocked just then; and, Who could it be?
  • Last sentences: Eli suddenly found his voice again. But what could he possibly say that was big enough for all?
  • Random sentence from middle: Eli was so puzzled that he stopped stock still in the middle of a crossing, and a milk truck screeched on its brakes about two feet from him.
  • About the author: According to her Find A Grave page, Frances Fox Sandmel was a Philadelphia native, Bryn Mawr College graduate and lifelong member of Congregation Rodeph Shalom. She died while taking a walk near her summer fishing cottage in Maine. While she taught writing workshops, I can't find that she published any books other than this one. I did come across some magazine articles, though.
  • Review: A 1959 review of this book in The New York Times begins: "There are very few stories, especially for children of the middle years, which deal so forthrightly with the friendship between a Jewish child and a Christian child as this one does. Frankly purposeful, it has its obvious moments, but it avoids the sickly sweetness of induced tolerance." ... Beyond that, there are unfortunately no reviews of this book on Goodreads or It's a shame this good-hearted book wasn't more widespread and didn't generate more reader memories.

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