Shoeless Joe, the soul-stirring novel on which the movie Field of Dreams is based, is more than just another baseball story. Kinsella captures the spiritual dimension that baseball represents for its most determined devotees in this tale of love and the power of dreams to make people come alive.
“Shoeless Joe” is the great Joe Jackson, one of the eight members of the 1919 Chicago White Sox who were banned from baseball for throwing the World Series. One day, while out in his corn field, Iowa farmer Ray Kinsella hears the voice of a baseball announcer saying, “If you build it, he will come.” “He,” of course, is Ray's hero, Joe Jackson. “It” is a baseball stadium, which Ray carves out of his corn field.
©1982 W. P. Kinsella (P)1991 Blackstone Audio, Inc.
“Wild...romantic...unconventional....A triumph of hope.” (Boston Globe)
If you love the movie, you will love the book. Book offers more insight on who the characters are and you can see why they were cut from the movie. It is like watching the expanded directors cut of the movie. Who doesn't want Field of Dreams to last another hour with good content?
The book is less streamlined than Field of Dreams - there's at least 1.5 times as much story here - and a lot of the stuff that didn't make the script is cut from the same cloth. It's thoroughly American, spiritual and unapologetically sentimental. Kinsella came up with all of the scenes you love if you love the movie. It's all his story. The only things I'd criticize is that it reads like he made it up as he went along, and that's especially apparent when it contradicts itself in one very important element of its mythology (what lies beyond the cornfield). It also wants the reader to respect baseball as a religion while showing an ugly contempt for other people's beliefs.
If you grew up with a love for the game, or a love of the movie, or love pure, u ironic magical realism, than you will love this story. The writer gets a little carried away with his characters' monologues at times, but I think it's charming. A tale from just long enough ago to feel nostalgic and timeless in a really good way. It isn't for everyone. I imagine that if you didn't really love baseball, than it would come across as charming, but odd. But is baseball is in your blood, than it is absolutely delicious.
I had been looking forward to this audiobook for some time. I'm a big baseball fan, and just loved the movie "Field of Dreams", which was based on this book. As a rule, the book is usually much better than the film made from it, but not this time. Actually, I thought the story was pretty good...or would have been if written by someone else. But the writing is just dreadful. Every other sentence, it seems, contains a simile. At first this was mildly amusing, but as it continues throughout the book, it becomes nothing short of annoying. I did listen to the entire book because I wanted to see where it was going, but the last couple of hours of listening were torture.
I was also less than thrilled with the reader. His voice is grating, and you can hear his intake of breath after almost every sentence. He sounds like he is gasping for air, which also gets to be annoying after a while.
I love field of dreams. I love the magic. I normally read books before movies but didn't know about this book, have watched the movie many times. I loved the extra story lines in this. I understand tho why they were not included in the movie. A nice relaxing dreamy read. Enjoyable
This book was not nearly as good as the movie... and I never say that. Books are typically always better than their movie counterpart, but not so in this case. The book lacks the drama, the suspense, and the overall great feeling you have at the end of Field of Dreams. I wouldn't recommend the book to anybody that has already seen the movie as it just doesn't compare.
I really loved Field of Dreams - so I was interested in reading the book. I was hoping for a light, fun, summer read.
Instead, I found the author's writing style to be tedious, lengthy, and ridiculously over-descriptive.
The narrator's voice sounded a bit like a sports announcer - which might have been a nice touch for this story if the writing was different. Instead, I found the combination of the sports-announcer voice plus the long, drawn-out descriptions almost impossible to listen to. .. the story seemed to drag on and on and on. ...
My two favorite topics are Baseball and Military History. But my favorite books of all time are Starship Troopers and Ready Player One.
My two favorite genres of books and movies are Sci-fi and Baseball, albeit not together but that might be interesting as well. Field of Dreams has always been a favorite movie of mine and didn't know that it was based on a book until I re-watched the movie recently and saw that it was based on a book of a different title. This one really touches on that '1, 2 combination punch' described above, but not too fantastical.
It wasn't with hesitation that I picked this book up, but is so with my recommendation for it. The only reason I gave this book 4 stars was because the story is amazing. Yes you get that from the movie, and yes it's much better in film. However I always like the original and seeing where Hollywood departs from the writer.
Again, the movie really is so much better, but there is a sweet little gem in the book that is a departure from the film that I became enchanted with and have learned additional information separately about 'JDS' and his WWII Veteran status. This alone makes the book worth the time.
Also, I didn't enjoy the narrator and continuously longed to here Kevin Costner's voice.
A friend recommended this, saying it wasn't really about baseball. It really is. That is, it goes on an on about baseball. Doesn't matter if it's a metaphor. It isn't often that a movie is so much better than the book. Field of Dreams is an excellent movie--much better than this book. Oh, and the reader had an annoying, grating voice.
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