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5.0 out of 5 starsBabe Ruth
Reviewed in the United States on October 9, 2017
Great telling of his life! Both the good and the bad. From his youth till his passing. Easy read and well written.
Reviewed in the United States on February 19, 2005
In "Babe Ruth" Kal Wagenhem introduces the reader to one of the greatest icons of American sport. From his home in Baltimore through the minor leagues, the major leagues and retirement we see the man behind the hero. Wagenhem does an excellent job of interweaving baseball with life.
Through the pages we meet the dichotomy that is Babe Ruth. Though America's greatest sports hero, he never learned to take care of himself. Though he could afford any car he wanted, he needed them because he never really learned to drive safely. Despite achieving riches unimaginable for an athlete of his day, he never quite crossed to the right side of the tracks. Despite a life dripping with debauchery, he never left the Church in which he had been raised. A vocal supporter of Al Smith, he did not register to vote until long after the Smith era. After having established himself as an outstanding pitcher, he became the game's greatest hitter.
The baseball world of Ruth's day is portrayed as differing greatly from that of today. In the off season players doubled their earnings on barnstorming tours. Players rode trains rather than planes. Some abused booze rather than drugs, but Oh, they played the game and the Babe dominated it as no other player has before or since.
Babe's life was a combination of triumph and tragedy, fulfillment and despair. The road from the top was bumpy for he Babe. His dream to manage never fulfilled, Babe resented a world which, though it was his life, he never really understood.
This book changed my view of Babe Ruth. He emerges as a figure despiseable and lovable, heroic and irresponsible, admired and pitied. The ability to lead the reader to see a different viewpoint is a test of a good book. By this measurement "Babe Ruth" hits a homer.
4.0 out of 5 starsA good book for any baseball fan
Reviewed in the United States on March 24, 2000
I really enjoyed this book. As a baseball fan (and a NYY fan), I had to read about Ruth. A great person from some aspects, this book took a look at the Babe from every point of view. It showed Ruth from his private and public life, his love life to his Saturday night (to Sunday morning)life. This was a very good book.