Forty years old, divorced, with two sons on the verge of adolescence and an ex-husband who considers visitation to be optional, Brenda Haversham isn't having a whole lot of fun. She's also no longer qualified for the work she loves, so she's working in a cubicle instead while trying to make ends meet.
Brenda is short on money, short on connection with her kids, and short on any kind of social life. The only thing Brenda has in abundance is her anger. And that turns out to be her greatest asset.
When she was a kid, Brenda's father taught her how to throw a good fastball. That wasn't of much use to a girl, but it is enough to astound onlookers at a "test your speed" pitching cage before a Cleveland Indians game. The more Brenda pictures her ex-husband's face on the other end, the harder she throws. And when someone tapes her performance and puts it up online, Brenda becomes an Internet sensation – and then more than that.
Soon, the Indians come calling and Brenda finds her life taking a turn in a new direction. She finds herself standing on the mound as the first woman player in Major League history – and dealing with everything that comes with it. The money is great and the endorsement deals are even better. The fury of "traditionalists," not so much. And the conflicting emotions of her teammates are even harder to manage.
Meanwhile, Brenda's home life is evolving faster than she can keep up, redefining her role as a mother, a friend, and even a lover.
As the season winds down Brenda will find out if she has what it takes to be a winner – at both baseball and life.
A funny, poignant, and endearing debut from a writer of rare warmth and humanity, FASTBALL is a 95-mile-an-hour heater of a novel.
Published March 24th 2015 by Story Plant, The
I’ll admit that I decided to give this one a go because I was that girl many, many, many moons ago who played softball and daydreamed just tiny bit about what it would be like to play in the MLB so my curiosity was piqued to see how this particular story would play out and I wasn’t disappointed at all. Throw Like a Woman isn’t your typical Cinderella type story, while there is a happy ending, the book gives you what I think is a realistic and honest look at what could possibly happen if a woman should ever make it into the world of major league baseball. All the various reactions to Brenda going to the bigs, from her family and friends to the fans, the players and even Brenda’s own reactions to everything going on, felt real and Petrone did a great job at weaving all the highs and lows into the story.
This may not need to be said, but there is A LOT of baseball in this, so if you aren’t a fan, even a fairweather one, it may be a bit much for you and go over your head but there are a lot of great moments in this that will have you groaning and laughing that make it worth while, like the whole P.F. Chang fiasco.
~ I received a copy from The Story Plant via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review ~