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|Format: DRM Protected ePub|
Vendor: Thomas Nelson
Publication Date: 2018
"This is a powerful story of grief, love, forgiveness, and holy mystery, and I loved it. Billy Coffey is a master storyteller." Lauren Denton, USA Today bestselling author of The Hideaway
Owen Cross grew up with two loves: one a game, the other a girl. One of his loves ruined him. Now hes counting on the other to save him.
Owen Crosss father is a hard man, proud in his brokenness, who wants nothing more than for Owen to succeed where he failed. With his innate talents and his fathers firm hand guiding him, Owen goes to college with dreams of the major leaguesand an emptiness full of a girl named Micky Dullahan.
Owen loved Micky from the first time they met on the hill between their two worlds: his middle-class home and her troubled Shantytown. Years later he leaves her for the dugouts and the autographs, but their days together follow him. When he finally returns home, he discovers that even peace comes at a cost. And that the hardest things to say are to the ones we love the most.
From bestselling author Billy Coffey comes a haunting story of small-town love, blinding ambition, and the risk of giving it all for one last chance.
"In one evening, a single baseball game, Coffey invites us into a lifetime. With lyrical prose and aching description we join Owen Cross on a journey of love, loss, faith, the unexpectedand Americas favorite pastime." Katherine Reay, author of Dear Mr. Knightley and The Austen Escape
'This rich and masterful tale is touched by the miraculous and is cleverly delivered as the first-person recollections of a seasoned catcher. Fans of America's favorite pastime will enjoy this book from page one. As the main character's memories crowd in between the third and fourth inning, there is a universal and undeniable draw to the complexities of growing up and chasing a dream or love. Coffey has composed an incredible literary journey of life, faith, love and baseball.'
'Coffey pens another nostalgic, lyrical tale blending faith elements with the supernatural . . . Coffey entrances readers with this quiet tale of love, loss, and deciding what matters most in life.'
Helen MAge: 55-65Gender: Female4 Stars Out Of 5Good story of life, faith and loveFebruary 6, 2018Helen MAge: 55-65Gender: FemaleQuality: 4Value: 4Meets Expectations: 4Steal Away Home, by Billy Coffey, is the story of Owen Cross. The story starts out at a major league baseball game in New York. Owen is 29 years old and plays in the Double A's. He has been invited to be a back up player for this one game. Through out the game, he spends his time remembering events surround his home town, school friends, parents and Micky. Owen comes from a small town where it was not allowed to mix with those from Shantytown. For those in that area, there was not even a church to attend. Until prom night when Micky, from Shantytown, saw something that encouraged her to start spreading the word of love and of leading her people in fellowship.
Owen comes from a family that from the outside looks idea. Owen's father is training Owen to excel in baseball to have the future his father did not have. Owen and his father's connection is baseball. But for Owen's mother, who felt left out of their lives, Owen loved her just as she loved him. She was supportive and caring. She knew about Micky and Owen's relationship and help them to continue seeing each other when it was not proper.
In a time and place where it was not normal to go to college, Owen received a baseball scholarship and went on to play ball. His plans were to take Micky with him to get her out of Shantytown, but when her father disappeared with her church's money, her church went up in flames and she disappeared, that was not possible.
I found this story a little hard to follow. The story is told to us by Owen and flips between the major ball game and his past. I found the story to be rather slow going. With that said, the story has a very good message. The parts in the story that stand out to me are the feelings towards those from Shantytown, the poverty and the lack of even a church. Another things that stands out to me is Owen's mother's feelings about Owen and his father having baseball while she had nothing with them. Owen admission that he had to work with his father in baseball to get his approval. But his mother loved him, just as he loved her, he did not have to work at it. I would recommend this book to those who enjoy the sport of baseball and enjoy reading good clean stories.
I received a copy of this book from the publisher through BookLook Bloggers.
Heart2HeartVictorville, CAAge: 45-54Gender: female5 Stars Out Of 5A grand slam home run in the literary world!February 2, 2018Heart2HeartVictorville, CAAge: 45-54Gender: femaleQuality: 5Value: 5Meets Expectations: 5I've been in love with Billy Coffey's ability to weave a story so well, that you are instantly transported from wherever you are to wherever he decides to take you. He has a way with words that goes beyond what one can describe except to say that it is a true gift to spin such a story, it make you wonder if there isn't a nugget of truth in there somewhere and he is taking you back to one of his memories so you can see it like he did. I've had the delight to read each and every single novel he has written and they all come with a uniqueness that you are picking up something sacred. I've been reading his short stories through his blog for years and was thrilled when he began to write novels.
You can sense that good ol' boy charm gleaned from the words that spill forth from the pages of his latest, Steal Away Home. I knew at some point in time we would see a story about Billy's love of baseball and feel this one is definitely a home run. One needs to understand something when you read one of his novels. They are all different in a sense that he is taking readers to often times, unexplored places within the character's mind to see things the way they did. In this novel it is through the eyes of Owen Cross, who like most young boys dreamed that one day he might make it to the big league spending childhood summers playing ball in sandlots with his friends. His natural ability is captivated upon by his father who watched his own dreams of making it into major league baseball slip away with a shoulder injury and now pushes Owen to the big dreams.
The one thing competing with Owen is a young girl who has captured his heart much like baseball did. He hopes that when it makes it big, he will be able to pull Micky along with him and rescue her from the life of being a less-than living among the small community of Mattingly, mostly being what the upper classes would consider plain white trash. But Owen sees the same thing in her that his dad sees in him, the opportunity for so much more than they could even dream. The novel toggles back and forth from Owen's childhood and his time with Micky, to the current day where he is making a debut of sorts in the big league, filling in if needed. The story is magical in the sense that you feel like you're Owen, the struggles he faces when people try and keep him and Micky apart, the differences in their upbringing and the outcome of the future for them both.
I received Steal Away Home by Billy Coffey compliments of Thomas Nelson Publishers and TLC Book Tours. This is such a beautiful story and I wasn't sure how receptive I would be of one involving a baseball player, but then movies like A League of Their Own and For the Love of the Game. It reminds you that times were simple in those days. Baseball was the epitome of technology and it is what drew people together for a common cause, to root for their team. I love the way Billy crafted this story in taking me back to those days of his childhood and how the decisions he made affect his future in ways no one could predict. Once again this one will sit like a priceless treasure in my own personal library and I can say it is getting full. Well down for hitting a grand slam in this novel and deserving of all 5 out of 5 stars in this reader's opinion.
SuzieNashville, TNAge: 35-44Gender: female2 Stars Out Of 5As Slow As...A Baseball GameDecember 27, 2017SuzieNashville, TNAge: 35-44Gender: femaleQuality: 3Value: 3Meets Expectations: 2This book moved at the pace of a baseball gameslow. While Ive never been a baseball fan because the sport moves so sluggish after a season of watching the speed of hockey players on the ice, I can appreciate what athletes pour into their sports.
But Steal Away Home was difficult to get into. During the course of Owen Crosss first major league game, he reminisces about the girl he once loved. Instead of chapters, the book has inningstop and bottom with too many flashbacks throughout.
None of the characters (with perhaps the exception of Owens mother) were very likable. I could blame that on the fact most of them were teenagers but even the adults felt selfish and self-serving. While Own and Michaela had a decent start, as I got further in the book, I liked them together less and less.
I made it to the end of the book, wanting to know the mystery of what exactly happened to Michaela (which was never answered) only to be confronted by another mystery and an ending that was less than satisfying.
Yet, Billy Coffeys descriptions of small town life in an Appalachian community and the divide between poor and poorest are spot-on. There is some depth of insights into humanity and the realization that giving up one dream for another sometimes leads to regret. That ordinary people can do extraordinary things and that our heroes can disappoint us.
I receive complimentary books for review from publishers, publicists, and/or authors, including NetGalley. I am not required to write positive reviews. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commissions 16 CFR, Part 255.