Curveball: The Year I Lost My Grip

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  • Edition: 1st
  • Format: Hardcover
  • Copyright: 3/1/2012
  • Publisher: Scholastic Press

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Sometimes, the greatest comebacks take place far away from the ball field. Meet Peter Friedman, high school freshman. Talented photographer. Former baseball star. When a freakish injury ends his pitching career, Peter has some major things to figure out. Is there life after sports? Why has his grandfather suddenly given him thousands of dollars worth of camera equipment? And is it his imagination, or is the super-hot star of the girls' swim team flirting with him, right in front of the amazing new girl in his photography class? In his new novel, teen author Jordan Sonnenblick performs his usual miraculous feat: exploring deep themes of friendship, romance, family, and tragedy, while still managing to be hilariously funny.

Author Biography

Jordan Sonnenblick is the author of the acclaimed DRUMS, GIRLS, & DANGEROUS PIE, NOTES FROM THE MIDNIGHT DRIVER, ZEN AND THE ART OF FAKING IT, and the sequel to DRUMS called AFTER EVER AFTER. He lives in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania, with his wife and two children.


From Curveball: The Year I Lost My Grip

The next several photos are taken all in a row, click-click-click.Each is zoomed in more tightly than the one before it. The pitcher is in his windup, one arm cocked behind his head, his glove hand swinging down, across his body, toward the catcher. Then the throwing arm is whipping itsway forward in stop-time as his compact body is launched forward by the thrust of his back leg against the pitching rubber. There's a shot that freezes the action just as the ball leaves the pitcher's hand. His arm is coming straight down, and his entire body is tumbling forward. If you look past all of the moving limbs, you might be able to tell that something has gone wrong. The pitcher's face is now stretched in a grimace of agony.

In the next shot, the pitcher has fallen halfway out of the frame so that you can only see his head, his shoulders, a blur of infield, outfield, the blue sky. The photographer adjusts in a split second, swinging the camera downward just enough to center his subject in the frame one more time. Now the pitcher has tumbled to his knees, and his glove hand is pressed against the elbow of his throwing arm. Click. There's one more photo, and this one is blurred, as though the photographer is moving as the shutter opens: the boy falling forward. You can tell his face is going to hit the dirt at the foot of the pitcher's mound. You can tell it's probably going to hurt.

The photographer is my grandfather.

The pitcher is me.

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