Growing Up Pedro: How the Martinez Brothers Made It from the Dominican Republic All the Way to the Major Leagues (Candlewick Biographies) Reviews

UPDATE TIME: 2017-08-01 
Review Score: 5 out of 5 star From 12 user ratings

" This is a wonderful picture book biography of Pedro Martinez. The book starts by showing Pedro growing up in the shadow of his older brother, Ramon, in poverty in the Dominican Republic. Many details about his stellar baseball career are included, but what makes this book stand out is the importance of family and the close relationship he shares with Ramon.Fans of baseball, who want a shorter biography, will really enjoy Growing Up Pedro. There is an author's note and bibliography in the back. " said.

In this case we have life, to a degree, imitating art; art created to inspire and demonstrate acts of patience, practice, perseverance and paying it forward. Growing Up Pedro: How The Martinez Brothers Made It from the Dominican Republic All the Way to the Major Leagues (Candlewick Press, February 10, 2015) written and illustrated by Matt Tavares, highly respected author/illustrator of baseball biographies and fictional picture book stories about baseball, paints us a vivid portrait with his words and images about two baseball greats.

My full recommendation:
" said.

"This is an inspiring book involving a boy from the Dominican Republic who shared the dream of playing baseball in the United States for the Major Leagues. He and his brother, Ramon, worked hard to make their way to the U.S., where Pedro ended up winning a World Series with the Red Sox. This book shows how he took his talents and dreams mixed with a lot of hard work, and it ended him up in the Hall of Fame.

I enjoyed the journey this book took me through, and how it showed that perseverance can really make dreams come through.

This book would be great for kids to read to help realize that our talents are meant to be used in this world. It shows that trials will pop up in our lives, but can be overcome.
" said.

""Growing up Pedro" is the true story of a man named Pedro Martinez. Pedro and his brother Ramon grew up in the Dominican Republic, where they developed a love for the sport of baseball. Ramon was older than Pedro, and he ended up being drafted to the MLB while Pedro was still too young. Eventually, Pedro was drafted to the major leagues as well. He ended up having an even more successful career than his brother, earning several Cy Young Awards, among other achievements. The author tells the story of how they remained close throughout their careers, and even played on the same team for a period of time. This is a great example of a great piece of non-fiction literature. All of the information provided is accurate, and there is a variety of sources that are cited at the end of this book. I plan on reading this book to my own classes someday. The story emphasizes how important it is to persevere, and follow your dreams.
" said.

"Growing up Pedro is a well written, beautifully illustrated children's biography. I enjoyed that the book started and ended in the same location- even ends with a repeat of a sentence at the beginning of the book. That gave the book a nice feeling that showed how much Pedro admired and cared for his brother. The illustrations, as usual, did a beautiful job capturing the emotions and action of the story. I particularly liked the use of the smaller illustrations for smaller aspects of the story- laying in bed dreaming about the future, etc. I was also happy to see that Pedro learned from the challenges his brother faced in order to make his path easier. My only complaint is that the text format makes it look like the story is going to rhyme and it doesn't. I'm glad is doesn't- I don't think it would have worked well with the story, but it was a little distracting at first. However, it's possible that the story is meant to be read in a rhythm that I just didn't pick up without reading it out loud. " said.

" I liked the emphasis on Pedro and Ramon. Pedro's so famous now that I think people forget he was following in his big brother's footsteps.I also like how the book pointed out how hard Pedro worked at both baseball and learning English so that things would be easier for him than they were for Ramon. " said.

"Stunning watercolor, gouache, and pencil illustrations complement an inspiring story of determination and brotherly love. Growing up poor in the Dominican Republic, Pedro Martinez idolized his older brother Ramon and followed in his footsteps in many different ways. Because Ramon played baseball, Pedro played baseball too, and against all odds, Ramon lands a contract with the Los Angeles Dodgers. He buys a baseball glove for his younger brother, and after he moves to the United States, he is careful to share some of his experiences and challenges with Pedro who he hopes will some day come after him. After much hard work, Pedro is also brought on board the Dodgers' team. However, due to financial constraints, he is traded, eventually leading the Boston Red Sox to the World Series title in 2004. Youngsters will find much to consider while reading this book as Pedro dealt with many life challenges, including his diminutive size, poverty, language barriers, and living in a world unfamiliar to him. But as the author-illustrator points out, he always had his amazing brother to guide him and offer advice. The back matter includes additional information about Pedro's and his amazing baseball feats and a personal note about Pedro from the author-illustrator. What a marvelous, inspiring story Pedro's is! " said.

"My 8-year old and I reserved all of the Caldecott contenders from the library so that we can run them through our own family jury before the winners were officially announced.
There was so much to like about Growing Up Pedro--In the story: We love the fact that Pedro feels like one of our own--because he was a Red Sox pitcher. He was with the Red Sox in a very significant year--2004, the first time in 86 years that the Red Sox finally won the World Series. The story of Pedro is about overcoming so many obstacles--his poverty, his small size, and other challenges. Knowing that Pedro didn't do it alone--he always relied on his big brother Ramon who helped him to learn English, to throw a curveball, and told him to never to give up on his dream. I loved that Ramon and Pedro got to play on the Red Sox together. I especially love that Pedro hasn't let the money and fame of being in the major leagues go to his head. He stayed in his hometown of Manoguayabo and donated his time and money to help improve the lives of the people there. He is responsible for paving roads, building houses, churches, baseball fields, and a new elementary school.
Really great story, well told. Beautiful illustrations.
The illustrations were done in watercolor, gouache, and pencil.
L gave the story a 4 and the pictures a 4. He said that he didn't give the illustrations a 5 because some of the people's heads looked funny--like bobble heads instead of depictions of real people.
I give the story a 5 and the pictures a 4.
Pedro is a great hero for kids. I loved the author's story about his own love for and experiences with Pedro Martinez.
This book is good for baseball fans and non-sports fans alike!
" said.

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