Jackie Robinson Day
"The numbers only tell part of the story. They cannot capture the essence of the man, his legacy, or all of his accomplishments. There's not a formula, not even in this day and age in baseball, that can measure Jackie Robinson's impact. But there is one number -- Robinson's famous No. 42 jersey, which was retired throughout the game in 1997, and Major League Baseball's commitment to celebrating his life on April 15 every year since 2004 -- that has become perhaps the most important in the sport."
This is directly from Major League Baseball's official website. That is the power of Jackie Robinson. Celebrate Jackie Robinson Day this Sunday, April 15, 2018 by donning the number 42 and reading one of the newest titles about his life.
42 Is Not Just a Number by Doreen Rappaport (2017)
Grabbing readers’ attention with lines such as, “It was 3:00 a.m., but no one in the Robinson family was sleeping,” Rappaport pulls them in close to witness events that shaped baseball great Jackie Robinson. From a racist encounter with a neighbor at age eight to his time spent in the U.S. Army and the Negro Leagues, 21 short chapters tell a story of courage, self-control, and perseverance. One chapter excerpts poignant fan letters sent during Jackie’s first season with the Brooklyn Dodgers: “If I can raise my boy to be half the man that you are,” an admirer writes. Drawing from Robinson’s autobiography and other sources, Rappaport explores some of the seminal events in Robinson’s life and the ballplayer’s feelings about them, ably profiling a groundbreaking athlete and “one-person civil rights movement.” (from Publishers Weekly)
The United States v. Jackie Robinson by Sudipta Bardhan-Quallen (2018)
Before he made baseball history, Jackie Robinson fought segregation in the U.S. Army. Bardhan-Quallen focuses on Robinson’s acts of resistance, including his refusal to give up his seat on a military bus, for which he was court martialed: “He was one of the first black Americans to challenge a segregation law in court. And he won.” The story jumps from this victory to Robinson’s post-Army life, as he played baseball with the Negro League Monarchs, minor league Royals, and Brooklyn Dodgers, where he cemented his legacy as the first African-American major leaguer. Raw, sweeping brushstrokes bring a sense of extemporaneous energy to Christie’s gouache paintings. Readers who only associate Robinson with the baseball diamond will recognize how his success depended as much on his perseverance as his batting average. (from Publishers Weekly)