The Book: I'm sure you've been hearing the buzz surrounding The Art of Fielding by Chad Harbach. The novel made many, many best-of-2011 lists. Just in case you aren't quite sure what the book is about, here's the publisher's summary:
At Westish College, a small school on the shore of Lake Michigan, baseball star Henry Skrimshander seems destined for big league stardom. But when a routine throw goes disastrously off course, the fates of five people are upended.So far, I've read only the first 50 pages of The Art of Fielding, so I can't review the book, but from the description and from reviews I've read on other book blogs, I can tell that it would have wide appeal. I'm usually attracted to books about relationships of all kinds, and Harbach's novel has promise.
Henry's fight against self-doubt threatens to ruin his future. College president Guert Affenlight, a longtime bachelor, has fallen unexpectedly and helplessly in love. Owen Dunne, Henry's gay roommate and teammate, becomes caught up in a dangerous affair. Mike Schwartz, the Harpooners' team captain and Henry's best friend, realizes he has guided Henry's career at the expense of his own. And Pella Affenlight, Guert's daughter, returns to Westish after escaping an ill-fated marriage, determined to start a new life.
As the season counts down to its climactic final game, these five are forced to confront their deepest hopes, anxieties, and secrets. In the process they forge new bonds, and help one another find their true paths. Written with boundless intelligence and filled with the tenderness of youth, The Art of Fielding is an expansive, warmhearted novel about ambition and its limits, about family and friendship and love, and about commitment--to oneself and to others.
To learn more about the The Art of Fielding and author Chad Harbach, you can check out the Facebook page or read an excerpt.
The Giveaway: If you are a resident of the United States and belong to book club, then I have great news. Little, Brown & Company's Book Club Booster promotion is sponsoring a fantastic giveaway of the Art of Fielding for your group. Yes, I said group.
One of you has a chance to win up to 10 copies of The Art of Fielding for your book club. All you have to do is fill out the following form and I'll pick a winner via random number generator on February 7. Little, Brown will send all the books to you or will send one book (up to 10) to each member of your book club--you can pick whichever method would work best for your group.
Now wait! That's not all! This giveaway is being hosted by different bloggers. Once all the winners are picked, Little, Brown's marketing department will use a random number generator to pick one book club that will also win a Skype chat (or call-in) with author Chad Harbach. That's right, one of the winning book clubs will be able to chat with the author.
I'm pretty excited about being one of the hosts of this Book Club Booster giveaway because I think the book will make a great book club selection. To help you get the conversation started you can check out the Reading Group Guide, available through the publisher's website.
Don't hesitate to enter here even if you've entered on another blog. Entering in two places increases your book club's chance of winning! Please remember that this giveaway is open only to those with a U.S. mailing address.