“No Easy Way: The Story of Ted Williams and the Last .400 Season”
by Fred Bowen, illustrated by Charles S. Pyle
Dutton Children’s Books, 2010, 32 pages, $16.99, Ages 6-10.
When you open this inspiring picture book biography about baseball player Ted Williams, you will be transported back in time. First, you will get to know young Ted, a boy growing up during the Great Depression who dreams of being the greatest hitter ever and works hard to make that goal a reality. Then, you will follow Ted into the major leagues, where he has a batting average of .327 in his rookie year with the Boston Red Sox but is not satisfied with that outstanding number. Finally, you will enter the action during Ted’s 1941 season when he sought to do something that seemed nearly impossible — hitting .400 for an entire season.
Ted Williams was indeed one of the greatest hitters in baseball history. But his story proves that greatness does not come from talent alone; it comes from hard work, determination and passion. Williams possessed all of these qualities and used them to achieve a feat that has not been duplicated in major league baseball since that amazing summer of 1941.
“No Easy Way” is a good read-aloud book. The illustrations are full of period details that help bring the era to life and correspond well with the action-filled writing. Even those who are not baseball fans will appreciate this true story of accomplishment.
— Reviewed by Krista Pedersen,
Alice and Jack Wirt Public Library