Lisa Says… Read This Book by Chad Harbach
By Lisa Hamilton
The Art of Fielding
by Chad Harbach
You do not have to be a baseball fan to enjoy the new novel by Chad Harbach, The Art of Fielding. This is Harbach’s first novel, and I agree with many critics – he has a huge hit on his hands.
At Westish College in Wisconsin, near the shores of Lake Michigan, five individual paths cross and connect when the routine throw of a baseball goes dangerously off course. Henry Skirmshander is the impressionable young ball player destined for greatness; he even keeps a tattered copy of a baseball manual with him at all times titled, Art of Fielding. Mike Schwartz is Henry’s best friend and mentor and is also the captain of the team. Owen Dunne is a member of the team and Henry’s gay roommate. Guert Affenlight, the College President, and his daughter, Pella, round out the characters in this story about our national pasttime and about life itself.
Harbach has been compared to Jonathan Franzen and several others for writing another great American novel. The Art of Fielding has all the components of one, no doubt. It is loaded with wonderful literary allusions, characters you feel, and it’s about family, friendship and love. A home run for us!
About this writer
- A native South Carolinian, Lisa Hamilton is the director of the First Presbyterian Church Preschool and Kindergarten. Of course she loves reading, but also finds time for cooking and walking her dog, Hurley.