Tuesday, May 19, 2015

Book Review - A Nice Little Place on the North Side

A Nice Little Place on the North Side: A History of Triumph, Mostly Defeat, and Incurable Hope at Wrigley FieldA Nice Little Place on the North Side: A History of Triumph, Mostly Defeat, and Incurable Hope at Wrigley Field by George F. Will
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I am a baseball fan. I wouldn't say I was a Cubs fan, but they are well respected in my family. My mother is a Cubs fan.  Every Spring we hear the common anthem of "This is our year" and every Fall we hear "Next year will be our year." I feel safe saying this chant could probably be heard in the households of many members of  Cubs Nation.  The other similar trait is the love of Wrigley Field.  I have a deep love of Wrigley Field. It is one of my favorite places to watch a ball game.

I was a believer in The Curse of the Billy Goat before reading this book, but now I fear the curse goes back even further. I fear the curse dates back to 1914 and the opening of Wrigley Field. The history of Wrigley is wrapped in so much more history.  This book covers the history of the team, the city, key players, owners and others associated with our beloved stadium.

The book jumped around a bit, but it tells an entertaining story. I enjoyed the history of baseball in Chicago and the history of the team. It was interesting to learn that William Wrigley was interested in making money, not in baseball.  His push to make money and not in putting together a winning team was the foundation of the modern fandom of this team.  Cubs Nation loves the team, but statistics show that when the team wins there is less love than when the team loses.

Most baseball fans know the story of Babe Ruth calling his shot. I knew that story, but I don't think I ever really knew that took place at Wrigley. I didn't know the history behind that game and the animosity that was brewing between the two teams.  This was a great story to read.

A not so great was the bubble popped for the idea that "Tinkers to Evers to Chance" is just a pretty poem.  While the three of them did turn a number of double plays, they were not the legends baseball myth they are sometimes believed to be, sadly.  Again the history behind the group was really interesting.

I think baseball fans, fans of any team, will enjoy this book on the history of one of the most iconic stadiums in baseball history.

I received this book from the Blogging for Books program in exchange for this review.

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