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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars its a pleasant tale-trouble is most brits have no intrest in baseball
This book fits in with john grishams other none legal storys-eg painted house, skipping christmas and playing for pizza..
Ilike the sentiment that prevails throughout the story-a promising carear spoilt by a ball to the head thrown bysomeone less talented.
A duying man who gets the chance to say sorry..
Yep its all about baseball and certainly if you dont...
Published 24 months ago by A. hulbert

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77 of 80 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Sadly, John Grisham seems to have writer's block
First you need to know that I have read every book that John Grisham has written. Despite the fact that a few years ago he seemed to lose the plot and several of his books were not up to his usual standard, I can't help but buy the next John Grisham because I hope that it will be as brilliant as most of his novels. This book was described as a book about relationship and...
Published on 12 April 2012 by Reggy A


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77 of 80 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Sadly, John Grisham seems to have writer's block, 12 April 2012
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This review is from: Calico Joe (Hardcover)
First you need to know that I have read every book that John Grisham has written. Despite the fact that a few years ago he seemed to lose the plot and several of his books were not up to his usual standard, I can't help but buy the next John Grisham because I hope that it will be as brilliant as most of his novels. This book was described as a book about relationship and family breakdown, so I hoped it was a new branch of his writing that he'd nail. Sadly it isn't, and this is Grisham's worst book ever. I only kept reading because of my insane loyalty to him. If it had been any other author I doubt I would have read more than two chapters. This is definitely sport fiction, with a tiny bit of badly written 'family breakdown' added for padding. Imagine you are listening to a radio broadcast of a sport that you are really not at all interested in, and you have to listen to match after match after match. Bored yet? Now listen to fans talking about the matches. Transfer that to the page and that's what you're reading. The saving grace is that the book is so short! Sadly, I could not empathise with the main storyteller, the son who is travelling to meet with his dying father, because there is so little character portrayal. His story is sad, but the narrative is emotionless. Even the hero of the book, who I could have a little sympathy for, I couldn't empathise with because I had no grasp of him as a human being. Grisham describes baseball in a forward because his London publishers told him we wouldn't understand the book otherwise, but we didn't need 14 pages of description! Had the narrative been good, the rules would have been almost unnecessary. I was reminded of how J K Rowling described an exciting match, with such precision and tension that the reader couldn't help but be enthralled and on the edge of the seat, even though the sport was fictional! That is the quality of writing I expect from John Grisham, because he is capable of great writing, but this is poor. Maybe this book will be a success with baseball fans in America. And I suppose a good number of the books will be sold in the UK to Grisham fans like myself, but I suspect most of those books will remain unread. John Grisham's vocation seems to be to expose the failings of the US law systems and excite us with legal and criminal wranglings, and he needs to get back in the courtroom fast or he'll loose his following in the UK. Such a shame! If you're thinking about buying this book, spend your money on something else. If, like me, you just have to try it anyway, wait until you can buy it cheaply from a charity shop, because that's where a lot of copies will end up very soon!
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41 of 43 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars 'Baseball is a game of failure...', 12 April 2012
By 
FictionFan (Kirkintilloch, Scotland) - See all my reviews
(TOP 100 REVIEWER)    (VINE VOICE)   
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This review is from: Calico Joe (Kindle Edition)
In a departure from his usual legal thrillers, Grisham here gives us a book about the world of baseball. The first person narrator is Paul Tracey, whose father, Warren, was a pitcher for the Mets in 1973 in the same season as Joe Castle, the Calico Joe of the title, was breaking all records as a rookie player with the Cubs. Warren is now dying and as Paul travels to see him, he tells us about his childhood, his hero-worship for Joe and why his relationship with Warren reached breaking point.

Normally I am a big fan of Grisham, but I was very disappointed by this book. Firstly it is very short and yet the plot, such as it is, is so slight as to barely maintain interest to the end. Instead the book is filled with extremely detailed descriptions of imaginary baseball games, so detailed that Grisham felt it necessary to give what he calls a summary of the basics of the game. This 'summary' runs to 13% of the entire Kindle book and was so dull that I gave up halfway through, deciding to trust that the book would make sense even if I didn't know what a drag bunt or a pick-off might be. By about the fourth chapter, I was so bored that I was speed-reading through the innings by innings match descriptions that fill easily half the book dropping back in whenever it looked like the plot might move along a little. However, the plot was so uninteresting and clichéd and the characterisation was so superficial that they did not make up for all the rest.

I would have given this book 2 stars but I recognise some people will be more interested in baseball and perhaps in interminable scoring statistics, even imaginary ones, than I and so have upped it by one star. Grisham says in his introduction 'Baseball is a game of failure'. Unfortunately I feel this self-indulgent book is an example of that. Here's hoping Grisham returns to form in his next novel.
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17 of 18 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars CALICO JOE, 13 April 2012
By 
Amanda "sac" (uk) - See all my reviews
(TOP 500 REVIEWER)   
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This review is from: Calico Joe (Hardcover)
Warren Tracey was a baseball player for the New York Mets, a nasty, violent and agressive man who made life for his family a living hell. Now many years later he is close to death and his son Paul who has had very little contact over the years with his father decides to visit him with the intention of putting to rest one tragic incident which has haunted him, the day his father vindictively hurt the popular and talented Joe Castle on the field.
I believed before reading this novel that the very essence was about a family conflict between a father and son, however this quite short book really was more about the game of baseball. If you are a huge fan and knowledgeable about this sport then this would be of great interest. It was not by any means a bad read, it had a few touching moments and I did want to know what happened in the end, but there was far too much baseball and not enough of a story.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars its a pleasant tale-trouble is most brits have no intrest in baseball, 24 April 2012
By 
A. hulbert "glassmen007" (bristol.uk) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Calico Joe (Hardcover)
This book fits in with john grishams other none legal storys-eg painted house, skipping christmas and playing for pizza..
Ilike the sentiment that prevails throughout the story-a promising carear spoilt by a ball to the head thrown bysomeone less talented.
A duying man who gets the chance to say sorry..
Yep its all about baseball and certainly if you dont know the game or around the USA you may well get board..
If you like the range of Grishams writing then this will be fine-dont expect a classic thoe.
As a side note if you like legal style then read Mark Gimenez he has a tallent much like Grisham for the legal thriller-5 books so far and a new one on the way...
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Totally lost interest, 23 April 2012
This review is from: Calico Joe (Hardcover)
First book i have ever totally lost interest in.It was so much facts and figures and no story.Why did John Grisham bother,I dont know.Got to page 26 and then stopped.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars What's happened....?, 23 Jun 2012
This review is from: Calico Joe (Hardcover)
I love John Grisham and have read most of his books, but I got bored of this after the first couple of pages. I guess if you are a die-hard baseball fan (not many in the UK I imagine), then you will like it.

Very disappointed,, glad I got it from the Library and didnt pay for it!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Calico Joe, 30 May 2012
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This review is from: Calico Joe (Hardcover)
Received this book on pre-order so no reviews beforehand, sorry to say it's the the first book I have not been able to finish from John Grisham. I suppose if you are a big baseball fan you would find it interesting, unfortunately not a follower of this sport so lost interest half way through, tried hard to get into it, honestly. Have all his other books including Painted House, am also reading his Theodore Boone books. Would not recommend Calico Joe.Calico Joe: A father's guilt. A son's redemption
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Disappointed, 16 May 2012
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This review is from: Calico Joe (Hardcover)
This book should never have been released in U.K. Baseball has never caught on and there is far too much detail about the game and I doubt that I shall read this author again if he is so out of touch with European taste.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars A book about rounders, 23 April 2012
By 
Cavernguy (West Midlands) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Calico Joe (Hardcover)
I am not being fair I guess as I gave up after 3 chapters.Very poor indeed.Nothing more than a story about a game we played at junior school.....only we called it Rounders.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars A little disappointed, 17 April 2012
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This review is from: Calico Joe (Kindle Edition)
As a Brit I must say that this book will be of very little interest to most people unless they have an abiding interest in baseball. The book seems to focus more on the game and averages/shots/scores than the characters and plot.

Grisham did prepare a foreword explaining the basics of baseball but the story focusses more on the achievements of a character than a half-decent plot.

Whereas I've enjoyed other Grisham non-legal thrillers this one was extremely disappointing.
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Calico Joe
Calico Joe by John Grisham (Paperback - 3 Jan 2013)
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