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Reviewed by Jack Magnus for Readers' Favorite
Daydreaming: A Baseball Story is a children's sports picture book written and illustrated by R.W. Thompson. The narrator of the story is a primary school principal who happens to notice two boys walking over to the athletic fields from the window of the staff room. He watches as they approach the baseball diamond and begin playing catch, one in position on the pitcher's mound and the other behind the home plate. As their play continues, the pitcher's throws get more deliberate and less hurried, as if he were considering how to handle an opposing team's batter. Both pitcher and catcher seemed transported to a fantasy game in the ninth inning, with the pendent at stake. The principal found himself, joyfully, also a witness from his vantage point at the window. All three were caught up in the intensity and the magic of the game.
R.W. Thompson's children's sports picture book, Daydreaming: A Baseball Story, was a magical interlude for me as well as I too was transported to a remembered game from the past and re-experienced the glance I, in my position at first base, shared with the pitcher in those moments before he began to wind up for the next one. Thompson's story and illustrations capture both the wonder and immediacy of baseball, and the magic to be found in daydreams and imagination. I loved reading this book and savored the tension and intensity of the players as they played their fantasy game, and then I marveled at the power I had found in a children's picture book. Yes, Daydreaming: A Baseball Story will enthrall the adult who's been charged with reading a story aloud as deeply, if not more so, as it does the young listener, and that's a very rare thing indeed. This stirring story, with its accompanying masterful illustrations, stands out above the usual children's fare and it's most highly recommended.